Proud to Be an Economic Developer

ImpactAs TVA Economic Development staff get ready this week for our 10th Annual Economic Developers’ Forum, we reflect back to last year when we honored Joe Max Higgins Jr., CEO of the Golden Triangle Development LINK in Mississippi, with a rare distinction – the Mega Developer Award. This award recognized Higgins and his team’s major economic development accomplishments while we were celebrating TVA’s 10th anniversary of the International award-winning Megasites program. When we celebrate economic development achievements like these, we definitely take pride in the results of our work.

Yokohoma Tire…Severstal…PACCAR…These are major corporations, but what do these names really mean for a region?

Thousands of quality jobs, billions of dollars in new investments stimulating the economy, and HOPE for the future! Such desirable mega-results don’t just magically happen. It takes regional, state and community collaboration and teamwork among many highly talented, prepared and service-oriented economic and community development professionals.

Listen to this recent short PBS news podcast “Will new manufacturing ease Mississippi’s ‘psychosis of poverty?’” about the significant turnaround in the local economy of these rural Mississippi communities: (more…)

Digital Detective: If You Post It, They Will Come: Attracting Tourists and Prospects Through Wikivoyage

Passport picThrough the Digital Detective series, TVA is helping Valley economic developers explore their social media marketing options.

As we describe how various social media channels work, we also illustrate how you can put them to work in your own community. This week, we explore Wikivoyage, a free, online world travel guide that is essentially Wikipedia for travel.

Benefits of Wikivoyage

Wikivoyage is ideal to promote local tourism and cultural life in the Valley because:

  • Unlike printed guides, Wikivoyage lets you constantly update information
  • You can create a page about your community for free
  • You can add information about your community to other, existing Wikivoyage pages to increase your visibility

Wikivoyage is also useful in economic development:

  • You can show site selection consultants and prospects how to “get in” and “get out” of your community by car, plane or train
  • You can showcase your community’s quality of life through “see,” “eat,” “do” and other categories on your page

Getting Started

Wikivoyage works much like its sister channel, Wikipedia (which we wrote about last week).

To get started, create an account and user profile. To create or edit an article, use these guidelines:

  • Use facts, not promotional or marketing language
  • Cite your facts
  • Include links to your community’s website

If you get stuck, there is help at the Travellers’ Pub. (more…)

Digital Detective: The Key to Wiki

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Through the Digital Detective series, TVA is helping Valley economic developers explore their social media marketing options.

As we describe how various social media channels work, we also illustrate how you can put them to work in your own community. This week, we dive into Wikipedia.

What Is Wikipedia? Think of Wikipedia as today’s version of the old-fashioned encyclopedia.

Wikipedia has three basic characteristics:

  • Crowd-sourced: Volunteer authors (anyone with Internet access) write and edit articles on any topic they can think up.
  • Ever-changing: Articles are written, edited and changed in real time.
  • Free: Anyone with Internet access can read this content for free.

 Why Wikipedia Is Worth Your Time

These three characteristics drive Wikipedia’s considerable popularity. Nearly half of the traffic to Wikipedia is driven by search engine queries. Whenever someone does a Google search, 95 percent of the time they see a Wikipedia article in the first page of their search results. (more…)

Digital Detective: Dear Economic Developers: It’s Time to Tweet

HiResThrough the Digital Detective series, TVA is helping Valley-area economic developers to explore their social media marketing options.

As we describe how various social media channels work, we also illustrate how you can put these tools to work in your own local jobs and investment recruitment efforts.

This week, we dive into Twitter.

What Is Twitter?

Twitter lets you interact with people, gather business intelligence and share news instantly.

You can use Twitter to:

  • Share tips, articles, links, best practices and other useful material (including content from others, in posts called Retweets)
  • Break news about recognitions, jobs, investments and expansions in your community
  • Provide a link to your blog or newsletter
  • Promote a community event and share key points from the event
  • Build networks by “following” people and attracting your own followers

First and foremost, Twitter is a channel for networking—building relationships. Like any solid relationship, Twitter success requires listening actively and sharing information that others find useful. A rule of thumb with Twitter is to use it 80 percent to inform and 20 percent or less to self-promote your organization. (more…)

Digital Detective: Leveraging LinkedIn for Marketing, Like a Pro

                                                    

Leveraging LinkedIn for Marketing, Like a ProHiRes

Getting your community or economic development organization “on the map” begins with drawing your own map – in other words, charting your marketing plan. As you identify your primary audiences and come up with ways to reach them, one particular digital mode stands out for economic development marketing: LinkedIn.

Last week, as part of our Digital Detective series, we gave an overview of this social media channel. This week, we take a deeper dive, with practical tips on how you can make the most of three tools found on LinkedIn.

Tool No. 1: Your LinkedIn Profile

Start with an assessment of your profile and beef it up. How complete is it? Have you created your own personalized URL? To get leads, is your profile tailored to the prospects you are trying to attract? Are you using the right key words in your profile to be found more often? (more…)

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