On October 3, an innovative twist on speed dating called
Meet Your Match
will pair Cincinnati-based entrepreneurs with local designers. Hosted at The Brandery
—one of the top startup accelerators in the U.S.—the goal of the event is to introduce budding startups to design firms and help them obtain essential services for getting their businesses off the ground.
As part of Cincinnati Design Week
, which runs September 30 through October 5, a secondary objective of the matchmaking event is to educate entrepreneurs about what types of services designers can provide; how those services can elevate their business image; and how those services are priced.
The event is sponsored by Artworks' SpringBoard
, a business planning and development program that helps artists, artisans and creative entrepreneurs achieve their artistic and economic goals by creating a unique and collaborative learning environment.
During the 90-minute event, entrepreneurs will have an opportunity to interview three designers who are interested in meeting that entrepreneur’s design needs. Rather than paying cash, participating businesses can offer $500 of goods or services in exchange for well-designed collateral that will take their ventures to the next level. Business owners will identify their design needs by selecting from a set menu of services
that includes everything from T-shirts and web ads to brochures and business cards. Entrepreneurs will also disclose the goods and services they are prepared to exchange if a match is made at the event.
"Meet Your Match is designed to give entrepreneurs an opportunity to meet multiple designers in 90 minutes," says Sarah Corlett, Director of Creative Enterprise at Artworks. "Finding the right person or firm who can visually represent your company is a bit like finding the right mate. Rather than spending weeks scheduling interviews, this event facilitates those first interactions, saving both the entrepreneur and the designer time and resources."
The event is scheduled from 12 to 2 p.m. on October 3. Spaces are still available for both entrepreneurs and designers who want to participate. You can find a simple application form for entrepreneurs
and application form for designers
at the Springboard website. Applications are due September 25 by 5 p.m.
By Sarah Whitman