The Barbara Tilley School of Arts & Crafts came from my desire to find classes and workshops in my area, and my inability to find what was being offered.
Instead of trying to reinvent the wheel, I took a page from car dealerships and malls. They realize that having a community of sellers help everyone, the sellers and the buyers. It works because of two things:
Economics & Geography:
Automobile dealer rows, like mall food courts, are an example of the economies of agglomeration. Even though being grouped together increases immediate competition, the auto row becomes more of destination for consumers and benefits all the dealerships. Many consumers may want to test drive automobiles from multiple companies before making a purchase and the auto row provides one stop shopping. Competing dealerships also often share advertising costs to promote their single destination under an agreed-upon marketing name.