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Marketing Grant Program


Marketing Grants are offered to Minnesota non-profit organizations formed for the primary purpose of tourism promotion. Grants are to be used for marketing and promotional projects or to conduct research to help in this endeavor.

If you have any questions, please reach out to your Regional Manager.

2020 Marketing Grant Program 

2020 Marketing Grant Guidelines

2020 Marketing Grant Request Form

2020 What's New 

Deadline for funding request: Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2019

Only request grant funds anticipated to be used. If an organization requests more funds than they use, there may be future penalties, such as the amount available to those who have previously cancelled funds.

Maximum amount awarded per grant: $7,000 and minimum request for funding $500

Preapproval by your regional manager before work begins is required for:

  • Hardship Waiver for Logo Requirements
  • Statewide Tourism Organization Grants (previously Special Grants)
  • Research Project Focus, Methodology, and Budget (recognizing Explore Minnesota as a partner)
  • Public Relations Plans
  • Trade Shows

Explore Minnesota Logo, Hashtag and Mention Requirements
Explore Minnesota logo must be visible and linked to on the organization’s home page. It is recommended to put the logo/link in the footer of the site.

Official Explore Minnesota logo is required on the following platforms

  • Billboards/Out of Home
  • Promotional Videos (all formats including YouTube, Vimeo, broadcast, etc.)
  • Print advertisements
  • Digital advertisements
  • Direct mail pieces
  • Trade Show sponsorship and recognition
  • Explore Minnesota must be mentioned in any radio/voice over scripts
  • Social Media promotions require the #OnlyinMN Hashtag
  • Explore Minnesota must be recognized in research projects and public relations plans

Out-of-State Marketing Requirement
Advertising and direct mail projects must demonstrate at least 50% of the grant award spent is distributed out of state. Proof of out-of-state distribution must be provided. For example, if an organization is requesting $7,000 in grant funds, there must be at least $3,500 distributed/targeted out of state.

Ineligible Expenses

  • Any Explore Minnesota program or initiative, such as co-op advertising, booth sharing, partnerships, print publications and is not eligible.
  • Infrastructure projects such as flowers, banners, trails, maintenance and signage.
  • Promotional products.

Deadline for Reimbursement Request
When all projects are complete but no later than February 15, 2021. Only one submission per grant; no partial reimbursements will be accepted. 

Proof of payment
Proof of payment will be required for reimbursement and includes vendor statements showing a zero balance, receipts, canceled checks or credit card/bank statements showing payment with account information redacted.

Grant Fund Reimbursement
Explore Minnesota will reimburse for funds within 30 days after the State determines that the Grantee has satisfactorily fulfilled all the terms of their grant agreement, and has received a complete reimbursement request which includes a grant reimbursement request form, copy of all vendor invoice(s), proof of payment and all other supporting documentation including the grantee’s cash match, EMT logo and out-of-state market requirements.

The 2019 Marketing Grant program ended December 31, 2019 with requests for reimbursements due no later than January 31, 2020.

2020 Marketing Grant Awards

2019 Marketing Grant Awards

2018 Marketing Grant Awards

For more information contact your regional manager

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