The population is growing and tomorrow’s kids need a backyard to play in.
If your city is looking to attract future residents, investors and tourists, it’s time to get proactive about city growth. While the story of a place can help sell it, it’s up to municipal leadership to find, craft and substantiate the strengths that make a city unique.
Keep reading for 21 tips for city growth in 2022.
Your Business Marketer is the proud partner of cities across the midwest. Our digital marketing services can help put you on the map and keep you there. Get in touch with the YBM team today to learn more.
Promote City Growth: 21 Ways
With post-Covid-era remote work making small town living viable for hundreds of thousands of Americans, there has never been a better time for midwestern cities to invest in expanding. This process might include giving your city’s online presence a facelift, creating new ways for current constituents to engage and attracting tourists with a strategic online marketing campaign.
Not sure where to start? We’ve got you covered. We’re good like that.
Let’s look at 21 ways you can promote city growth right where you are.
1. Define Your City Brand
City branding is a kind of communication strategy where marketing techniques are applied to a locale. By defining the look, feel and flavor of your city, you can promote a one-of-a-kind experience that locals are proud of and weekenders flock to.
A collective city identity can strengthen local community ties while making your town an attractive prospect to future residents and business inventors.
2. Update Your Website
Your city website gives the world a glimpse of what you have to offer. By keeping content fresh and current, you can keep your community informed of goings-on and allow travelers to visit with confidence.
Pro Tip: A city’s website should showcase its strengths, give outsiders a sense of local history and culture and be easy to navigate.
3. Get on Social Media
Social media provides a way to engage with constituents in real-time. Consider starting social media accounts to promote local events and businesses, update residents and give tourists a taste of local flavor.
4. Create a City Hashtag
Social hashtags create a space where locals and tourists can view each other’s photos of local eateries, recreational areas and all those hidden gems your city has to offer.
Pro Tip: Get residents involved by hosting an online hashtag-naming contest.
5. Create a City Tagline
A beloved city nickname, tagline or saying can help create a sense of identity that will stick in visitors’ minds for years to come.
Pro Tip: To encourage civic engagement, consider involving residents in choosing a city tagline.
6. Invest in SEO for Your City
Investing in SEO for your city’s website and any online ad campaigns — including those on Facebook and Google Ads — will help increase your city’s online visibility. SEO makes it easier for outside tourists, weekenders, future residents and investors to discover your city online.
Pro Tip: SEO is highly specialized. Consider working with an SEO expert to get it right.
7. Identify and Build on Strengths
Identify the greatest assets your city has to offer and lean into them. By building on what’s already good, you can create a strong — and marketable — local narrative.
8. Encourage Community Engagement
Community engagement is the heart and soul of small town charm. Whenever possible, create avenues for civic engagement and encourage constituents to participate in decision making.
9. Consider Video Marketing
Video is one of the most powerful marketing tools out there. Work with professional videographers to capture stunning visuals, interview local residents and business owners and introduce leadership in videos that can be utilized on your city’s website, on television and on social media.
10. Identify a Collective Future Vision
Gather constituents, business owners, investors and local leadership to create a shared vision for your city’s future. This is a great exercise that can highlight shared values and identify priorities for future developments and initiatives.
11. Protect and Invest in Natural Assets
A city’s natural features can be one of its greatest assets. With more folks appreciating the great outdoors in light of the global pandemic, protecting and investing in scenic natural spaces is paramount.
12. Create Investment Incentives
Make it easy for businesses and local philanthropists to invest in the community by establishing investment incentives and programs. Incentives might include allowing businesses to sponsor events or local initiatives like community cleanups in exchange for promotional opportunities.
13. Celebrate Calendar Holidays
Bring your community together by organizing city-wide celebrations of calendar holidays, or create your own local traditions, like a unique Founders’ Day celebration.
14. Create Incentives for Redevelopment
Give your community a facelift by introducing incentives for redevelopment initiatives. This might include tax breaks, facilitating local partnerships and securing discounts for reconstruction services and materials.
15. Seek and Encourage Outside Funding
Whether through federal grants or making your community attractive to outside investors, getting proactive about outside funding can help your city tackle pain points and create new communal assets like public parks, trails and improved infrastructure.
16. Identify High-Impact Projects
Gather input from local stakeholders to identify high-impact projects. By investing in meaningful changes, cities can retain a robust community and strengthen their appeal to future residents and business owners.
17. Create Citizen-Based Task Teams
Encourage constituents to get involved in monitoring and improving various aspects of their home city. By establishing citizen-based task teams, municipalities can delegate projects and help foster a sense of local pride and ownership over local assets.
18. Create Scenic Spaces
Art installations, scenic vistas and local landmarks are great magnets that can help draw outsider tourism and encourage user-generated content in the form of photography, social posts and travel vlogs.
19. Get Proactive About Sustainability
The future is sustainable. As socially and environmentally-minded millennials enter their prime home-buying years, getting proactive about local sustainability efforts is an investment in your city that can generate valuable goodwill among constituents.
Sustainability initiatives might include waste management projects, community cleanups and encouraging local partnerships that facilitate local sourcing of raw materials.
20. Support Local Independent Businesses
Future residents, tourists and weekend warriors can find chain stores anywhere in the US. What they can’t find elsewhere is the unique collection of local independent businesses that make your city hum.
Mom and pop shops help establish a unique cultural charm that adventurers will travel for. Local city leadership can foster this sense of identity by prioritizing local independent businesses and providing ongoing support to the small business community.
21. Invest in a Digital Marketing Strategy
An effective digital marketing strategy is essential if you want your community to stand out to future residents, tourists and investors. By partnering with a professional marketing agency, you can help ease your city’s growth pains by freeing up staff members and in-house resources to focus on the high-impact projects your team is most qualified to take on.
Grow Your City with Your Business Marketer
Growing a city is a lot like growing a business. It requires ambition, perseverance, solid partnerships and ongoing investments. When done right, the returns can be tremendous for local businesses, municipal leadership and your expanding community.
A team of experienced city branding marketers can help put you on the map with a city growth and digital marketing strategy. Since our founding, Your Business Marketer has helped countless cities across the midwest thrive.
Rapid growth, real results. That’s us.