Lewisville ISD is always on the lookout for more revenue opportunities, and some new ideas may come in the form of buses, scoreboards and debit cards.
Bill Lee, director of marketing for the district, recently presented ideas to the LISD Board of Trustees on how to increase revenue through advertising and sponsorship efforts.
“Sponsorships in LISD provide our business partners opportunities to work closely with us and take full advantage of power of our brands, and I think that’s huge,” Lee said. “While at the same time providing a potential exceptional income for the district.”
Lee described several ideas for Phase 1 as low-hanging fruit.
“I really feel like we can make every one of these happen,” he said, adding that some could start this year while others would begin next year.
Among those is bus advertising. Lee said the district has 285 new buses and that LISD’s buses drive more than 11,000 miles a day, which he said generates 35,000 to 70,000 impressions per day.
While details must be ironed out, he said each bus could potentially have 6-foot-by-2.5-foot and/or 7-foot-by-1-foot an advertisement signs.
Lee said after working with other nearby districts, including Lake Dallas, Carroll and Frisco, it was determined that moving forward with bus advertising could generate more than $854,000 a year.
Lee said the district would pay a one-time set-up fee that would buy two banners. He said every client would get to pick two bus routes.
“So we’re dealing with 105 billable buses,” Lee said, adding that state law allows for a bus to have up to three advertisements on it.
Lee said another idea is video scoreboards for all five of the high school stadiums.
“Video scoreboards not only bring a huge entertainment value to our fans, but remember these new scoreboards are more than just an apparatus for the TV monitor,” Lee said. “The whole thing is a video board. So it makes our stadiums a huge outdoor classroom now. Every one of our stadiums could be an outdoor classroom yearlong for lots and lots of different things.”
Lee said LISD could generate $370,000 a year.
He said another idea is to monetize its websites, beginning with bestschoolsintexas.com, which the district snagged in 2019, and lewisvilleisdsports.com, which will consolidate multiple LISD sports sites that exist today.
He said Frisco ISD has a similar sports website and that last year it had a banner ad that sold for $50,000. He said LISD’s sports website could generate “thousands and thousands and thousands” of views and that those two websites alone could generate $370,000 a year.
Lee said LISD could also make use of sponsorships with the two incubator programs, the Career Out program and a podcast.
Another idea is to create LISD debit cards where the district would receive 3 cents for every transaction.
All together Lee said these Phase 1 ideas could generate $2 million a year.
Lee said Phase 2 includes larger items, such as stadium naming rights and brand copyrighting on merchandise.
He said ultimately any event or even accolade can make money for the district, such as the back to school fair, employee recognition ceremonies, etc.
“Everything, once this engine is done and in place, is monetizble,” Lee said.
Board members supported moving forward with the concept.
“At this point I’m head nodding for a lot of it,” Trustee Kristi Hassett said. “I don’t know that I would agree with all of the items, but we need funding, and this would be a good source.”
Board members questioned some of the preliminary ideas, however. Lee said the plan is for the program to be administered by the Lewisville Education Foundation, but some trustees questioned the logistics of that. Trustee Tracy Scott Miller also said he doesn’t see the district selling stadium naming rights.
Superintendent Kevin Rogers said there will be more details to discuss in the next two to three months.