Apply to ErieMade

The application for the ErieMade Business Academy closes at midnight on February 10, 2024, at 12 AM.

Apply Now

The ErieMade Journey

Business plans work best when they are deeply understood,
have clear goals, and are connected to resources for action.

Learn

Understand the elements of a business plan, including branding, marketing, financials, operations, and other fundamentals.

Through 12 weeks of sessions, participants will access best practices from experts in entrepreneurship via virtual and in-person experiences. With individual coaching, they will explore how to apply these best practices to their creative businesses.

Plan

Develop a business plan to guide their decision-making as they pursue opportunities and overcome barriers.

Participants will leverage the knowledge gained from the first phase to create a 3 to 5-year business plan with clear and reasonable goals. Through peer gatherings and more one-on-one coaching, they will maximize free access to the LivePlan tool and create a road map for success in creative entrepreneurship.

Thrive

Graduate from ErieMade with the entrepreneurial confidence and capital readiness needed to thrive.

Participants will activate their business plans with support and resources, with coaches helping them realize goals. In addition, participants will access services to help with entity formation, refreshed websites, style guides, bookkeeping guidance, and other vital support. They can also pursue funding to reach big goals that need capital.

Want to Learn More?

An ErieMade Mixer will be on January 24, 2024 where prospects can learn more and meet past participants.

RSVP Here

Eligibility

  • Identifies as an artist, maker, designer, and/or craftsperson*
  • Aspires to become a full-time creative business owner
  • At least one year of business operations and/or product sales
  • Has access to relevant technology (computer, internet, etc.)
  • Located in Erie County, Pennsylvania**
  • Willing to complete pre and post-program surveys

* The application uses the creative business definitions provided by the PA Council on the Arts.

** Session content will be presented in-person and virtually to encourage participation across the county.

Priority

  • Minority, women, and/or veteran-owned creative businesses
  • Entrepreneurs operating in low to moderate-income areas
  • Ready to consider significant changes to improve entrepreneurship
  • Ready to improve capabilities and confidence around financial skills
  • Ready to sign participation agreement and commit to program
  • Interested in realizing social and economic impact, including job creation, activating main streets, and growing overall visibility for Erie’s creative economy

Timeline

  • Applications are open now and close February 10, 2024
  • Information session on January 9, 2024, at the Erie Arts & Culture’s Creative Crowd Meet-Up
  • Applicants complete Business Growth Ladder* assessments
  • Selectees will be notified on February 15, 2024
  • The first phase runs 11 weeks from March 6, 2024, to May 22, 2024
  • Graduation May 29, 2024, at 1020 Collective
  • The second phase runs 2 months, from June 2024 to July 2024
  • The third phase is after graduation, as learning and planning are put to work

* The Business Growth Ladder (BGL) is a survey to gain high-level data to help determine the state of a business.

Benefits

  • In-person sessions led by content experts from across the region*
  • One year use of the LivePlan tool to organize learning and planning
  • One-on-one coaching with Amanda Duncan
  • Grant-like service stipend to build business fundamentals
  • Sponsored access to regional markets and exhibitions
  • Targeted consultations with business topic specialists
  • Planning improves eligibility for CEAP grant from EAC
  • Planning improves eligibility for the StARTup grant from ECRDA
  • Planning improves eligibility for SBA Microloans with Bridgeway and other regional funders

* Session content will be presented in-person and virtually to encourage participation across the county.

Program Facilitator

ErieMade will be facilitated by Amanda Duncan, a community builder and business consultant based out of Erie, Pennsylvania. Throughout her career, she has supported entrepreneurs, small businesses, and nonprofits with strategic and operational guidance. As the former Community Leader of Radius CoWork, a community of over 170 freelancers, entrepreneurs, and business owners, she has played a significant role in fostering an environment of growth and collaboration. She is also the owner of Chiara Consulting, a business consulting firm, where she partners with entrepreneurs and business owners to streamline their operations, increase productivity, and achieve their goals more efficiently.

ABOUT AMANDA DUNCAN

Program Leader

As the Programs Director for Bridgeway, Katie Schaible uses her talents to translate opportunities in real estate development and product design into catalytic transactions for creative entrepreneurs across the region. Katie brings over 14 years of experience in product development as well as entrepreneurial, logistical, and project management skills to Bridgeway. She ran a high-tech design and manufacturing business in which she oversaw the development of multiple products from concept to manufacturing. After a successful exit from her own business, she uses her combined business and product development skills to help companies and entrepreneurs work through the innovation process as a technical consultant.

Program Location

ErieMade will again be hosted by 1020 Collective, a graduate of the 2022 ErieMade Business Academy. 1020 Collective is an art and event space located in the heart of downtown Erie, Pennsylvania. The space includes multiple galleries, a multi-purpose event space, a unique state-of-the-art recording studio, a café, and a store. ErieMade sessions will be held at 1020 Collective, and participants will receive a free, one-year membership to access 1020 Collective resources and spaces.

ABOUT 1020 COLLECTIVE

Session Topics

Setting Expectations for ErieMade

March 6, 2024, at 6:00 p.m. at 1020 Collective
Facilitators: Katie Schaible & Amanda Duncan
Essential Questions:
  • Who is the facilitator, program leader, and ErieMade partners?
  • How can I get the most out of ErieMade?
  • What resources and content will I access in ErieMade?
  • What is expected of me in ErieMade?

Entrepreneurship 101: Mindset, Mission & Values

March 13, 2024, at 6:00 p.m. at 1020 Collective
Facilitators: Azriel Weaver & Amanda Duncan
Essential Questions:
  • What is the “why” for my creative entrepreneurship?
  • How do I sell out without selling out?
  • How do I sell out without burning out?
  • How do I balance creativity with business practices?

Marketing 101: Product, Audience, Brand & Assets

March 20, 2024, at 6:00 p.m. at 1020 Collective
Facilitators: Chris Lantinen & Amanda Duncan
Essential Questions:
  • What products and services am I offering?
  • Do I know who my target audiences are?
  • Is my branding consistent and effective?
  • What marketing assets do I need to build my brand?

Study Session 1

March 27, 2024, at 6:00 p.m. at 1020 Collective
Facilitator: Amanda Duncan
Essential Questions:
  • How does the content from the first two sessions apply to me?
  • How can I use LivePlan to organize my insights?
  • What barriers to success am I starting to realize?
  • What kind of financial sustainability and growth am I pursuing?

Financial Literacy 101: Pricing, Bookkeeping, Banking & Credit

April 3, 2024, at 6:00 p.m. at 1020 Collective
Facilitators: Melanie Ansell, Amanda Duncan & Jenessa Williams
Essential Questions:
  • How do I know if my products are priced for profitability?
  • Why is it important to get proper bookkeeping established ASAP?
  • Why do I need to consider a business banking account?
  • How can my credit help or hurt my creative entrepreneurship?

Legal 101: Intellectual Property, Entity Formation & Contracts

April 10, 2024, at 6:00 p.m. at 1020 Collective
Facilitators: TBD & Amanda Duncan
Essential Questions:
  • What kind of legal structures should I look at?
  • What can I do to protect my creative IP?
  • Am I doing business legally and protecting myself?
  • How do strong contracts protect my creative business?

Study Session 2

April 17, 2024, at 6:00 p.m. at 1020 Collective
Facilitator: Amanda Duncan & Katie Schaible
Essential Questions:
  • How does the content from the last three sessions apply to me?
  • How can I use LivePlan to organize my insights?
  • What barriers to success am I starting to realize?
  • How is session content informing my thoughts for the future?

Marketing 102: Sales Channels, SEO & Advertising

April 24, 2024, at 6:00 p.m. at 1020 Collective
Facilitators: Matt Flowers, Karen Rzepecki & Amanda Duncan
Essential Questions:
  • What are the ways I can reach and excite my customers?
  • How do I build marketing into my business routine?
  • How do I determine if my marketing is working?
  • What technology can I use for marketing?

Financial Literacy 102: Cash Flow, Budgeting, Financials & Taxes

May 1, 2024, at 6:00 p.m. at 1020 Collective
Facilitators: Eric Presogna & Amanda Duncan
Essential Questions:
  • How does my bookkeeping inform my projections for the future?
  • How can I budget for one week, month, year, or beyond?
  • What are the tax implications of creative entrepreneurship?
  • How do I predict cash flow to keep my creative business thriving?

Study Session 3

May 8, 2024, at 6:00 p.m. at 1020 Collective
Facilitator: Amanda Duncan & Adam Kenney
Essential Questions:
  • Am I ready to use LivePlan to create a 3 to 5-year plan and projections?
  • How can I use LivePlan to organize my insights?
  • What barriers to success am I starting to realize?
  • How is session content informing my thoughts for the future?

Graduation

May 22, 2024, at 6:00 p.m. at 1020 Collective
Essential Details:
  • Participants share high-level goals for the future
  • Friends and family are invited to celebrate
  • Lite refreshments are provided by local vendors
  • Additional details to come

 

 

ErieMade Strategic Partners

Program leader of ErieMade, Bridgeway is a social impact lender that offers impact-driven lending and programs to grow businesses and revitalize places.

A wide range of business building opportunities including strategic marketing, market research, and product design.

Access to STARTup Grant and program opportunities that elevate Erie’s regional economy.

Offers complementary programming and access to the Creative Entrepreneur Accelerator Program (CEAP) Grant.

Class of 2023

In 2023, ErieMade served a dynamic cohort of creatives and we are proud of their ongoing progress.

2023 Cohort