How to get funding for your festival: 6 ways to explore

How to get funding for your festival: 6 ways to explore

It is nec­es­sary to draw up a bud­get to organ­ise a fes­ti­val, like any oth­er event. Antic­i­pa­tion and metic­u­lous man­age­ment will allow you to organ­ise an event that lives up to your expec­ta­tions (and those of the atten­dees).
The cost of these events can add up quick­ly! In order not to have to rely on your own funds, it is essen­tial that you think about how to finance your fes­ti­val from the begin­ning.
By read­ing this arti­cle, explore the dif­fer­ent fund­ing pos­si­bil­i­ties avail­able to you and find the ones that fit your project and your ambi­tions.


    1. Sponsorships and partnerships

    Depend­ing on the type of event, your audi­ence and the venue, you can look for organ­i­sa­tions that can pro­vide finan­cial or mate­r­i­al help.
    Pre­pare a pre­sen­ta­tion of your fes­ti­val, includ­ing the advan­tages of becom­ing your spon­sor, and send it to dif­fer­ent brands, com­pa­nies and insti­tu­tions.
    Whether the sup­port received is finan­cial, mate­r­i­al or as a ser­vice, it will always be pro­por­tion­al to the val­ue that the col­lab­o­ra­tion brings them. It is, there­fore, in your inter­est to make your pro­pos­al attrac­tive!

    “Receiv­ing sup­port through part­ner­ships allows us to do even more beau­ti­ful and big­ger things.” Julien Gaona Co-organ­is­er — Pos­i­tiv Fes­ti­val

    Once you have signed sev­er­al con­tracts, why not invite all your part­ners to a small event to thank them for their par­tic­i­pa­tion? You may also con­sid­er offer­ing them an exclu­sive VIP area dur­ing the event.
    For Arnaud Lavergne, Direc­tor of Part­ner­ships at the French fes­ti­val We Love Green, part­ner­ships are “a rela­tion­ship of trust”. The idea is to build loy­al­ty so that the agree­ments nego­ti­at­ed are renewed year after year.

    2. Patrons and public funds

    If your event has an artis­tic focus, there might be com­pa­nies inter­est­ed in sup­port­ing you as patrons. Find out about com­pa­nies that offer this type of sup­port to fes­ti­vals of the same kind as yours and present your project to them.
    Like­ly, pub­lic funds are also avail­able to sub­sidise ini­tia­tives pos­i­tive­ly impact­ing cit­i­zens; do not hes­i­tate to apply for any that may fit your project.

    3. Usage rights

    Many fes­ti­val organ­is­ers offer the pos­si­bil­i­ty for exter­nal providers to offer their ser­vices dur­ing the event. They can be food stalls (food trucks), ser­vices (make-up, tem­po­rary tat­toos, etc.) or sales of var­i­ous prod­ucts.
    Explore the pos­si­bil­i­ty of charg­ing usage rights (licens­es…) to pro­fes­sion­als who want to par­tic­i­pate in your event and who will make a prof­it from it. Restau­rants, shops, arti­sans… Many pro­fes­sion­als may be inter­est­ed in your fes­ti­val to offer their prod­ucts or ser­vices to atten­dees.

    4. Donations and crowdfunding

    Appeal to the gen­eros­i­ty of indi­vid­u­als and investors to raise extra funds to finance the organ­i­sa­tion of your fes­ti­val.
    Don’t rule out dona­tions as part of your fundrais­ing strat­e­gy! You can use your own net­work or even present your project on a crowd­fund­ing plat­form.

    5. Ticket sales

    To finance part of your fes­ti­val and make it pos­si­ble to organ­ise it, you can charge for attend­ing!
    You can eas­i­ly man­age reg­is­tra­tions or tick­et sales for your event using online tick­et­ing soft­ware. In addi­tion to track­ing sales as they hap­pen (and there­fore eas­i­ly know­ing the total num­ber of atten­dees), using an online tick­et­ing ser­vice allows you to start gen­er­at­ing rev­enue even before the fes­ti­val gates open.

    Tip: Weezevent trans­fers your tick­et rev­enue to you every 15 days, allow­ing you to rein­vest the mon­ey raised in oth­er expen­di­ture items!

    Con­sid­er a stag­gered launch strat­e­gy (ear­ly bird tick­ets) and make it attrac­tive (var­i­ous pro­mo­tions) to sell more tick­ets.

    6. On-site sales

    The above-men­tioned pos­si­ble fund­ing ideas allow you to gen­er­ate income before your fes­ti­val. But, of course, you also have to con­sid­er what fes­ti­val-goers will spend dur­ing the fes­ti­val. It is com­mon to offer paid prod­ucts and ser­vices such as food and bev­er­ages, mer­chan­dis­ing, exclu­sive activ­i­ties, etc., allow­ing you to gen­er­ate addi­tion­al income.

    Tip: The cash­less sys­tem is a tech­nol­o­gy spe­cial­ly designed to facil­i­tate the man­age­ment of cash flows dur­ing a fes­ti­val. We advise you to find out more about its advan­tages and deter­mine, with the advice of your sup­pli­er, whether it is suit­able for your event.

    Why implement cashless technology at a festival?

    “When­ev­er I talk about cash­less, I always give the same exam­ple: if I want 3 beers, 2 Breizh Cola, 1 Orang­i­na, and I return 2 glass­es, how much do I owe you? Hur­ry up; there’s a queue! Nobody has ever been able to give me an answer… Nowa­days, this is not even a ques­tion; the cash­less ter­mi­nal does the work for you. For us, cash­less has, above all, made it pos­si­ble to sim­pli­fy the work of vol­un­teers and lim­it errors”. Jérôme Tréhorel, Direc­tor of the Vieilles Char­rues Fes­ti­val

    As we have just seen, there are many options to get fund­ing for your fes­ti­val. To read more about organ­is­ing a fes­ti­val, read our arti­cle “How to organ­ise a fes­ti­val in 8 steps”.

    Want to go deep­er? Down­load the “Fes­ti­val organ­is­er’s prac­ti­cal guide”, a free white paper with rich and var­ied con­tent to guide you through all stages of your fes­ti­val.

    Down­load the guide

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