Unicorns, Driverless Cars, and a Goat

Opportunity is in the eye of the beholder, which is exactly why promoting an economic region can be challenging. Attracting the attention of developers and site selectors is difficult unless you can stand out among the noise.

The Greater Ann Arbor Region has a lot to share including a unicorn company, a growing mobility sector, and a talented workforce.

  • Marketing Strategy 85% 85%
  • Event Branding 90% 90%
  • Business Attraction 80% 80%

Challenge

How do you make a region stand out among other economic development organizations? How can you make the most out of an economic development conference with site selectors and real estate developers in attendance, but many other economic development organizations vying for their time and attendance?

Our strategy for the Greater Ann Arbor Region was to design an attractive, exclusive dinner event that you wouldn’t want to miss during the Mid-America Economic Development Conference in Chicago. During the dinner event, the region’s partners could have exclusive access to attendees to advocate for business development in their region.

Approach

Working with the region, we planned the event and invited site selectors and developers to enjoy a five-course dinner at the award-winning restaurant, The Girl & the Goat. This intimate setting allowed for one-on-one conversations with site selectors and developers to showcase the region.

The event was branded “Make It in Michigan”. Working with the venue, we created a menu featuring Michigan products. Visual pieces were designed to highlight the region’s assets, including their workforce development system. The event gift was a unique item manufactured by a talented technology start-up within the region.

Outcome

Attendees of the event and the region’s partners reported the unique event offered a wonderful chance to facilitate excellent discussion regarding opportunities in the region. It was a great opportunity for networking, education, and marketing the region.