CNY Arts, Inc.


Marketing for Economic Development

Applications for the 2023 Marketing for Economic Development program are now closed.


Application DeadlineMonday, March 27, 2023 by 12:00 PM (noon)

How to apply: All applications must be submitted online through Submittable.

Who may apply: Nonprofit organizations located in Onondaga County with a significant portion (at least 60%) of mission or public programming dedicated to arts, culture, or heritage.

Award Amount: $3,500.00 to $17,500.00

Project Period: January 1, 2023 to December 31, 2023

This year, applicant organizations for the Marketing for Economic Development program must either:

  • Already have an established relationship with an ad agency, marketing firm, or marketing consultant in Onondaga County OR
  • Partner with an agency that CNY Arts will engage on the applicant's behalf.

Awarded Marketing for Economic Development grant funds will be disbursed by CNY Arts directly to this marketing partner upon CNY Arts receiving an invoice for the agency's subcontracted work.

Eligible Applicants

To be eligible for a Marketing for Economic Development Grant, organizations must have:

  • An IRS 501(c)(3) Letter of Determination OR
  • Documentation of incorporation under Section 402 of the NY State Not-for-Profit Corporation Law;
  • A permanent address in Onondaga County;
  • Arts, culture, or heritage as a significant portion (at least 60%) of mission or public programming, including, but not limited to, performance, exhibition, arts education, or public discourse; and
  • Demonstrated capacity to execute intended projects, provide status updates, and report on results in a timely fashion.

Organizations that receive Onondaga County funding through other CNY Arts grant programs, such as General Operating Support or Tier Three Project Support, will not have their eligibility affected for a Marketing for Economic Development Grant.

Eligible Marketing Partners

In addition to the above eligibility requirements, applicant organizations must also partner with an eligible ad agency, marketing firm, or marketing consultant. Eligible marketing partners must:

  • Be located in Onondaga County (permanent address);
  • Provide services & promotional materials that specifically target out-of-county audiences, demographics, and designated media areas (DMA);
  • Invoice CNY Arts directly for products & services provided not more than once per month;
  • Provide regular updates and deliverables to CNY Arts concerning services provided and amount of grant funding spent
  • Not exceed the grant recipient’s total award amount in contracted services, such as ad buys, creative development, creation of promotional materials for this project.

Ineligible Applicants

Organizations are not eligible for a Marketing for Economic Development Grant if they are:

  • Agencies of New York State or Onondaga County (including libraries);
  • Agencies from outside of Onondaga County;
  • Education institutions, schools, or educational foundations;
  • For-profit businesses;
  • Fewer than three years old;
  • Radio or television broadcasting networks or stations;
  • Cable communication companies;
  • Newspapers or magazines;
  • Engaged solely in the acquisition or restoration of physical property; or
  • Grantees with outstanding final reports from prior year CNY Arts grants.

This year, recipients of the Marketing for Economic Development Grant must be partnered with an advertising agency, firm, or consultant located in Onondaga County. Awarded funds must be utilized for subcontracted work with that agency or consultant.

Eligible Expenses

Eligible expenses include services and products offered by the partnering ad agency or consultant that meet the program goals (see page 1), such as:

  • Consultation;
  • Creative development;
  • Copywriting;
  • Production and distribution of marketing collateral; and
  • Ad buys.

Ineligible Expenses

Ineligible expenses include but are not limited to:

  • Any expenses that are not directly related to advertising;
  • Activities not open to the public, i.e., activities restricted to an organization’s membership;
  • Competitions or contests;
  • Expenses related to any programming outside of Onondaga County;
  • Fundraising events, e.g., galas, receptions, or benefits;
  • Entertainment costs, such as food or drink;
  • Accumulated deficits and debt reductions;
  • General operating expenses;
  • Requests that are greater than 20% of an organization’s total operating budget; or
  • Capital requests for equipment, design, feasibility studies, or construction.

Please direct all questions regarding expense eligibility to the Regrants Program Staff.


The application deadline is Monday, March 27, 2023 by 12:00 pm (noon).


All applications must be completed and submitted through the Submittable application portal.

You may save your progress on Submittable as you complete your application. Upon completing and successfully submitting an application through Submittable, you will receive an automated email confirmation to the registered email address. If you do not receive an email confirmation, the application has not been correctly submitted and cannot be considered for funding. Please note that once the application has been submitted, it cannot be edited any further without approval from the Regrants Program staff.

For further assistance, please refer to the Submittable Help Forum or contact the CNY Arts Regrants Program Staff.

It is strongly recommended that applicants review the online application form in advance.

Applicant Information

  • CNY Arts funding history;
  • Contact information of applicant;
  • Organization mission statement;
  • Annual Operating budget; and
  • Electoral district numbers.

Overview of Events or Season

  • Details of what will be promoted, including dates, locations, etc.

Marketing Plan

  • Grant request amount;
  • Specific promotion channels and media outlets, targeted audiences, geographic reaches, and prices of services;
  • Artistic discipline and type of activity; and
  • Estimates of artists, audience, and other beneficiaries.

Project Narratives

You will be asked to provide detailed project descriptions in response to the project narrative questions, such as:

  • Descriptions of planned public activites;
  • Audience engagement and promotion plan;
  • Community involvement and support; and
  • Use of grant funds, project timelines, and evaluation.

Uploaded Documents

  • Marketing plan & budget;
  • Biographies or resumes and work samples of key artists;
  • Proof of nonprofit status and list of staff and Board of Directors;
  • Organizational financial statement for most recent fiscal year (audited report or signed by board of directors;
  • Organizational projected budget for current fiscal year;
  • Additional artistic samples and support materials.
  • Marketing plan & budget;
  • Biographies or resumes and work samples of key artists;
  • Proof of nonprofit status and list of staff and Board of Directors;
  • Organizational financial statement for most recent fiscal year (audited report or signed by board of directors);
  • Organizational projected budget for current fiscal year;
  • Additional artistic samples and support materials.

Grant awards and funding recommendations will be determined by a competitive peer review process conducted by a panel of artists, arts administrators, and community leaders in Onondaga County. The panel will review each application both on its own merits and against the broader application pool. Because funds are limited, project proposals must meet specific criteria as published within these guidelines. The panel's funding recommendations will then be submitted to the CNY Arts Board of Directors for approval.


Peer review panelists for CNY Arts grant programs are nominated by residents and community members of Onondaga County and are subsequently appointed by the CNY Arts Board of Directors. Panelists must be nominated and must be residents of or work in Onondaga County to serve. Panelists are paid a nominal honorarium to participate and may not serve for more than three (3) consecutive years. To nominate yourself or another individual to serve as a peer review panelist, please complete this nomination form. New panelists will be selected on a rolling basis.

Applications will be scored on a 15-point rubric with three scoring criteria:

Programmatic Creativity (5 points)

  • Artistic & programmatic ability to serve as a tourism generator and to reach new audiences;
  • Innovation & quality of past artistic programming; and
  • Non-duplication of comparable existing arts programs or services regionally or statewide.

Marketing & Promotional Efficacy (5 points)

  • Innovative, effective, and comprehensive marketing strategies and promotional tactics—especially beyond normal marketing efforts—to reach new and out-of-county audiences;
  • Established partnerships and collaborations with businesses, promoters, CVBs or DMOs, hotels, event facilities, and other artists and organizations.

Feasibility (5 points)

  • Organization’s managerial competence & fiscal health;
  • Overall clarity of marketing proposal with clearly defined objectives;
  • Demonstrated capacity to execute projects and meet goals;
  • Reasonable plan for implementation and evaluation; and
  • Realistic and achievable budget and timeline.

Additional Consideration

Priority may be given to applications with proposed project that take place outside of Downtown Syracuse.

All grant recipients of the Marketing for Economic Development program are contractually obligated to the following terms as per the recipient's funding agreement. Failure to fulfill grantee responsibilities may result in the grantee's ineligibility for future consideration.

  • Sign and adhere to the terms laid out in the contract (funding agreement);
  • Conduct all funded activities as described in the application;
  • Submit all public activities to the Central New York Arts & Entertainment Calendar, as applicable;
  • Provide CNY Arts with copies of promotional materials and an advance schedule of all funded events;
  • Provide CNY Arts with complimentary tickets for all funded events for auditing purposes, as applicable;
  • Submit a Final Report within 30 days after the completion of the project;
  • Immediately and in writing notify CNY Arts of any changes to the project, including dates, locations, admission fees, artists hired, or activities conducted (all changes to funded projects are subject to approval); and
  • Prominently and correctly include the following credit language in all printed and published materials:
This project was made possible with funds from the County of Onondaga through the Marketing for Economic Development Program administered by CNY Arts.
  • Credit language must be accompanied by the CNY Arts logo and the Onondaga County Seal.

Can an individual artist apply for a Marketing for Economic Development Grant?

  • No. The only eligible applicants for this program are nonprofit organizations in Onondaga County. Individual artists may not apply, even with an eligible fiscal sponsor.

Can a nonprofit organization that applied for direct NYSCA funding, Statewide Community Regrants (SCR), or other Onondaga County grants apply for a Marketing for Economic Development Grant?

  • Yes. Direct NYSCA applicants, SCR applicants, Tier Three Project Support applicants, and General Operating Support applicants are all eligible to apply for a Marketing for Economic Development Grant.

Can a nonprofit organization apply more than once?

  • No. The Marketing for Economic Development program will only support one marketing proposal from any organization.