Putting Your Region’s Brand To The Test

Whether it is for an upcoming social media marketing campaign or a traditional marketing push for economic development, your region’s brand will be front and center.   In order for agencies to reach marketing objectives in an efficient manner,  the existing brand must be evaluated.   Although you can ask for help from a consultant, there are a few things that the personnel in your agency can do to test out your region’s brand to see if it is ready for the marketing initiative.

Here are 3 questions that you can begin to answer.

1. Know Who You Are

Identifying your brand for your region is a lot like looking in the mirror.  Your agency must assess what the region has and compile a list.  The key 0location factors are a good place to start however; the list must be distilled into your region’s brand attributes.  Remember, these attributes will define your region in the eyes of investors and they (attributes) should clearly set your region apart from other competing region.

Test It Out:

Once you have listed your region’s brand attributes, attempt to ask current stakeholders about the list.  It is important to know if citizens and existing investors in the region has the same perception as the agency.  If there is a gap, adjustments must be made before any new marketing initiatives can be executed.

2. Tell Your Story

From a social media marketing angle, your region’s brand must help in telling a story about why it should be selected by potential investors.  As mentioned above, brand attributes that are identified will be the  agency’s main actors and  actresses in the story that will ideally present a solution to investors’ problems or issues in regards to where is the best place to invest.

Test It Out:

With the attributes, try to put together a testimonial using existing content from the past quotes of investors and other stakeholders.  In addition,  regularly curating any recent content from the local press highlighting one or more attributes is ideal.  The inability to provide a story using the established attributes may be a sign that the attributes are incorrect and must be changed.

3. Substantiate Your Brand

More than ever, organizations are forced to substantiate their brand due to the level of conversation that is taking place on social networks; be it positive or negative. That being said, regions must put their best foot forward in terms of branding and reinforcing it with success stories dealing with investors in the region.

Test It Out:

Conduct interviews with a set of current companies that has invested in region and simple ask them to share their thought on why they selected your region.  See if any of the attributes are brought up in the discussions.

Conclusion

Branding is a crucial element of the marketing mix when it comes to promoting a region for investment attraction and retention.  To gain a strategic edge in positioning a region amongst others call for branding efforts that are validated with the aid of internal personnel from economic development agencies and exist stakeholders.

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