Posts Tagged ‘Twitter’
If you are in the business of attracting or retaining business for your community, chances are your customers – whether site selectors, business owners or creative people who invent new products and services – are active on social networks and sites.
How widely are such sites used in the economic development world? We don’t really know, because research just can’t keep up with the rapid changes. The most often cited statistic is that 57 per cent of members of the International Economic Development Council surveyed by the IEDC and Development Counsellors International (DCI) said they were using social media tools. But that was in 2009, a lifetime ago in Internet years.
More recently a survey of 3,800 marketers from all industries, carried out for the 2012 Social Media Marketing Industry Report published by SocialMediaExaminer.com, found that 83 per cent of respondents said that social media was important for their business. The survey also found that the Number 1 reported benefit of social media marketing was generating more business exposure (reported by 85 per cent of marketers), followed by increasing traffic (69 per cent) and providing marketplace insight (65 per cent).
Economic development organizations, too, probably employ social media to an almost universal extent, but they are missing out on one of its most essential benefits – finding out about themselves.
Where does information technology fit into a marketing strategy to build or revitalize a prosperous downtown?
Everyone agrees that infrastructure, events and arts & culture are critical to the success of a mainstreet. Unfortunately, just because you built it doesn’t necessarily mean people will come. A strong marketing and communications program is required to involve the community, and that’s where technology cannot be overlooked. Surprisingly, many downtown marketing organizations do not make use of modern communications technology despite their ubiquitous presence in society. Many do not even have websites.
There is a tremendous opportunity for such communities to improve their fortunes. One small step at a time can make a difference if the proper strategy is in place. Communications technology can provide the tools that pull your story together and channels to allow your messaging to reach your audiences.
The loss of educated graduates has become almost an accepted fact of life in small and rural communities and is most definitely a drain on a community’s ability to develop its creative economy.
Social media, however, offers your community a powerful means of finding and reconnecting with your town’s expats, and the opportunity to provide them with reasons to come back.
Former student high school alumni groups are some of the most popular and abundant groups on Facebook. For every high school of any size there will be at least one, and often several, Facebook groups for former students to join. These are hubs for people who share common experiences to reconnect with old friends, and share memories and photos of the glory days. You’re likely a member of one or more of these groups yourself. (more…)
Here’s a scenario with implications you might want to think about. Picture a site-selection professional who receives a message from a client while out of the office. The client is in a hurry to obtain comparative information about available industrial lands – from your community and another.
The site selector gets to work on her mobile device. She calls up your investment-attraction website as well as your competitor’s. Unfortunately your site’s information is impossible to find on the tiny mobile screen. Ah, but the other community has a website designed for access by a mobile device and the needed information is quickly found, copied into an e-mail and sent to the client.
The site selector promises to send information to the client about your community later, as soon as there is time to find it using the computer in her office. The client is in a hurry, though, and will already have judged whether the first community’s offerings fit the bill. Now, what is the most likely outcome of this search?
Mobile Friendly Economic Development
The fact is that mobile devices are the primary tools of business today. Everybody is on the move and carries a device. Nobody wants to wait for information. Nobody wants to miss an opportunity. Is your economic development department missing the opportunity to make your (more…)
There’s a secret ingredient that makes social media a value added channel for destination marketing organizations. It’s called fun.
Unlike email, which people view as having a mundane purpose, social media is characterized by an entertainment overlay that is sometimes overlooked. Users find it entertaining to be part of a group of interesting people, or to be among the first to spot something new going on, or simply to be in a virtual place where there is always movement and activity.
Smart DMOs have realized that social media can add to the fun offered by their destinations. Let’s look at Twitter to illustrate. Have you heard of the Banff Squirrel?
He’s the unlikely spokes-squirrel of Banff and Lake Louise Tourism in the Canadian Rockies. The squirrel has a continuously scrolling conversation with tourists via Twitter on the Real Banff page that many people find enjoyable to follow.