Economic Development Marketing Grows Communities

Marketing Plan

Unlike B2C or even B2B marketing, economic development marketing is a unique marketing niche, requiring both an understanding of economic development and marketing strategies. Equal parts economic analysis and creative problem-solving, developing a marketing plan to effectively promote a community, region, or state requires a comprehensive understanding of the area’s economic value proposition. 

A value proposition is what makes your community unique.  It is based on the area’s competitive advantages that differentiate it from competitor communities. In order to identify your community’s competitive advantages, a SWOT analysis should be conducted with a diverse cross-section of community stakeholders, business leaders, political leadership, economic development, and workforce partners. 

By identifying the assets, companies, opportunities, and competitive advantages of the community’s ecosystem, Upsize Marketing Strategies can develop an industry cluster analysis that pinpoints a community’s “best-fit” industry clusters. Next, a sectoral analysis looks at the targeted clusters in broad terms and identifies the key factors that are important to the different clusters. The sectoral analysis also prioritizes the most important factors and evaluates if the community’s assets and opportunities align with their target sectors’ requirements.  

An industry cluster analysis should be the foundation of any economic development marketing plan. Upsize Marketing Strategies will identify the community’s “best-fit” target sectors to ensure that the marketing plan produces the highest return on investment (ROI). Thus all marketing efforts should focus on these target sectors. Otherwise, your community is wasting limited resources on trying to recruit industry sectors that are unlikely to locate there, because your competitive advantages do not align with industry needs and requirements. Once we have discovered your community’s ideal target sectors through an industry cluster analysis, Upsize identifies the appropriate audiences and messaging that will resonate with targeted audiences. Such audiences in “best-fit” industry clusters include site selections, c-suite decision-makers in the target sectors, commercial developers, real estate agents, and industry media influencers.

Next Upsize Marketing Strategies will deploy the right tactics to reach these key audiences in your target sectors, including cluster marketing, content marketing, social media marketing, and video marketing. Other marketing firms will sell their tactics, such as slick videos and fancy social media campaigns. But these tactics will miss their mark unless they are based upon sound research. A comprehensive marketing plan should be research driven and coordinates the various strategies with an eye through your goals. It should leverage your marketing dollars in a coordinated and strategic manner and produce the highest ROI.  

Some of the most effective economic development marketing strategies include cluster marketing. Traditional marketing focuses on promoting sites and properties. However, it is no longer enough to market just properties and sites. Cluster marketing considers the entire ecosystem that makes an attractive and sustainable business solution. 

Cluster marketing focuses on promoting all the factors that are relevant to your target clusters. Once again, it is important that your marketing firm understands what is important in growing your target sectors. Upsize Marketing Strategies leverages marketing strategies that attract and grow new suppliers, vendors, manufacturers, and associated firms. 

Finally, once the marketing campaign is launched, monitoring key performance indicators (KPIs) is vital in finetuning the effectiveness of the strategies and tactics. Monitoring your KPIs allows you to course correct and adjust your current or future campaigns. Your typical marketing KPIs do not measure economic development progress in any meaningful way. 

That’s why it’s important to engage an integrated marketing firm that understands economic development.  Upsize Marketing Strategies is that firm.  Led by a Certified Economic Developer with 30 years of experience in economic development, marketing, branding, and communications, Upsize understands the economic development research and analysis, marketing strategies, key messaging and content that resonates, and key economic development metrics that matter. Contact us today>>

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