New Richmond embarks on marketing effortAfter months of research and strategic planning, the City of New Richmond has a new marketing plan to implement.
By: By Jeff Holmquist, New Richmond News
After months of research and strategic planning, the City of New Richmond has a new marketing plan to implement.
During a special City Council meeting Sept. 5, council members voted unanimously to approve the plan compiled by consultant Janet Ady of Ady Voltedge.
In presenting the final plan, Ady told the council that the community is an enviable position when it comes to marketing itself to business prospects that are considering a move or expansion.
She outlined several reasons why New Richmond is a better place to locate a business compared to others in the region, including the city proximity to the Twin Cities area, the large number of shovel-ready building sites available in town, the relatively young age of the average resident and the growing population base of the region.
“Why is growth important?” Ady said. “It means that employer can find employees.”
She said the community’s airport, quality school district and the local Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College campus also help give New Richmond a leg up in the battle for new jobs. The fact that a new bridge and a four-lane road will soon connect New Richmond to the Twin Cities will be another selling point for the city.
While the city has many assets it can market, Ady said the community needs to do a better job of telling its story so that businesses can seriously consider locating or relocating here.
“Within the region, you can be a star,” she said of New Richmond. “No question about it.”
Ady said it’s important for the city to develop a “pitch” that can simply be communicated to prospects who visit. Another key component of the city’s future marketing effort will be the development of a better and expanded website, she added.
“The majority of all searches today start on the Internet,” she explained. “If they can’t find you, they move on.”
Ady also encouraged the community to do a better job reaching out to “site selectors,” who work with businesses to scout out possible sites for future building or expansion projects. She said it would be a good idea for New Richmond to have a presence at various trade shows in the Twin Cities or Chicago to HELP distribute the community’s story to business prospects.
In New Richmond’s future marketing efforts, Ady suggested that the city target specific industries when developing a list of prospects for recruitment. Among the industries that would appear to be a good fit are food manufacturing, plastics or rubber manufacturing, central warehousing or distribution, and office operations, Ady noted.
Ady commended the city for its past and present economic development efforts, noting that New Richmond has done a better job than many in attracting job creators. But, she said, the community can’t afford to be complacent in this highly competitive economy.
“Feel good about where you’re at, but then try to do better,” she said.
The council voted unanimously to approve the final marketing plan document. The council members also agreed to earmark $30,000 for marketing efforts in 2013, with taxpayer funds likely to focus on website development at the start.