Sponsor

Sponsor our work. Support our journalism.

Are you a business or nonprofit interested in sponsoring Tone Madison with your tax-deductible contribution? Are you interested in making a personal gift that we can use to raise matching donations?

For more information and for our media kit, reach: [email protected]. And see our Sponsor Policy below!

“Thanks to Tone Madison, we’ve seen an uptick in new visitors to our website. Our sponsorship with Tone Madison helps us bridge the gap between the university and the greater Madison area. It’s our pleasure to support journalism that values the arts in our community.”

— Kate Lochner, Marketing & Communications Manager, University of Wisconsin–Madison Division of the Arts (current institutional sponsor)

“More than any other Madison journalistic outlet, Tone Madison is vital to our music & arts community: Top-notch writing and reporting, spotlighting artists, their art, its venues and beyond. Of course, they cover much more than just the arts scene; but I like to compare Tone Madison to the independent spirit of Madison’s record stores: curating and focusing on worthy topics typically neglected by corporate media.”

— Steve Manley, owner, B-Side Records (current business sponsor)

“Since the beginning, we recognized the importance Tone Madison would have by giving additional exposure to local arts, culture and music in our community.  Knowing that their focus aligns with one of the goals within our mission statement, the partnership was natural and basically a symbiotic relationship.”

— Michael Olson, owner, Madison Music Foundry (current business sponsor)

Tone Madison Sponsor Policy

Sponsoring Tone Madison is a great way to make sure your business or organization’s message reaches an audience of smart, engaged Madisonians. You’ll also be supporting independent media that provides crucial, trusted coverage of culture and politics in Madison.

The majority of our revenue comes directly from readers, in the form of donations. Support from sponsors is also a key source of income that helps us keep the lights on and pay our journalists.

Interested? Great. Let’s make sure we’re on the same page about a few things.

What we’re looking for

Tone Madison‘s sponsorship options are designed with small businesses, local non-profits, and university programs in mind. In short, we’re looking to work with anyone who’s striving to make Madison a better community. If you share our publication’s values and respect our editorial mission, we’d love to hear from you. 

Editorial independence

Sponsors are barred from any involvement in our editorial decisions. Sponsors do not receive preferential treatment in our coverage—don’t even ask. Editorial independence is key at Tone Madison. Readers need to be able to trust us. That’s why they’re here, and that’s why Tone Madison is worth sponsoring in the first place. Violating that trust would be a disservice to our audience, our journalists, and yes, even our sponsors.

Sponsors do not have input into the stories that will be produced, are not aware of specific stories we are working on, do not review them before publication, and do not have special access to our journalists. We will always disclose who our funding partners are to our readers. Sponsors must sign a clause agreeing to editorial independence before entering into a sponsorships agreement with Tone Madison.

Can I do an in-kind or trade sponsorship with Tone Madison?

Sorry, no. Journalism is costly work, so we have to prioritize working with sponsors who are able to make a direct financial contribution. That said, there is room for negotiation on sponsorship rates. If you’re willing to meet us halfway, we can probably work something out!

Political advertising

We do not accept sponsorship from campaigns for public office, PACs, etc. If your organization is a 501(c)(3) non-profit that advocates for a cause in the community, we will consider accepting sponsorship on a case-by-case basis. 

Display recognition

Sponsors of our non-profit publication receive recognition in the form of display space on our website and/or email newsletter, depending on the terms of the sponsorship. (Please note that we will be updating our newsletter sponsorship options as of October 2022.) We strive to integrate these displays into our website and newsletter in a neat and unobtrusive way, giving each sponsor’s display room to breathe without cluttering our readers’ experience. Our graphics specifications are simple, and it’s easy for us to switch out displays depending on a sponsor’s needs. Our website and email newsletter clearly identify sponsor displays.

Tone Madison reserves the right to decline any sponsorship display that, in its sole discretion, is incompatible with its mission or inconsistent with the values of Tone Madison, and to stop accepted sponsorships previously accepted, for any reason.

Displays must not be false, misleading, fraudulent, or deceptive. Displays can link to a destination of the sponsor’s choice, as long as it is 1) a website or page the sponsor controls and 2) clearly relevant to the content of the display. 

Displays cannot insult, harass, or threaten a user.

Displays cannot contain, facilitate, or promote the following: Libelous content, fundraising for other organizations, racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, ableism, fatphobia.

Sponsored content

We do not run sponsored content at this time—we just don’t have the capacity to produce or present it in a way that’s up to our standards. Sponsor recognition in our email newsletter may in some cases include a short written message describing the sponsor’s mission; this copy is subject to our approval and we reserve the right to reject it or request revisions for any reason.

Labor solidarity

As a worker-owned publication, we do not cross picket lines, virtually or otherwise. We will not accept sponsorships from businesses or organizations involved in union-busting or other activities that undermine the rights of workers. We reserve the right to terminate previously existing sponsorships under these circumstances. 

Cooperatives

We are in the process of converting our publication formally into a worker-owned cooperative. We’d love to work with other cooperatives. If your cooperative would like to sponsor Tone Madison, discounted rates are available.

Our values

Please note that our sponsorship partners undergo a vetting process to ensure messaging is consistent with Tone Madison‘s values. We are selective of sponsorship partners in order to maintain the trust and loyalty we’ve built with our highly engaged audience.

Tone Madison has the right to decline any sponsorship that, in its sole discretion, is incompatible with its mission or inconsistent with the values of Tone Madison, and to stop accepted sponsorship previously accepted.

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