Reviving a County
Ackermann PR was called on by Campbell County, Tennessee, to revive its image
Campbell County, another of the depleted coal industry areas, was in the midst of a suffering economy with extremely high unemployment levels.
Utilizing Ackermann PR’s brand development process, we began by conducting our “define and discover” phase:
- A series of focus groups were conducted with a variety of community participants.
- The input from community focus groups pinpointed the most critical need was creating new jobs and increasing county tax revenues.
- Based on those needs, we developed a strategic economic and tourism development plan that included:
- Establishment of both a brick-and-mortar and virtual business incubators. Partnerships with both Roane State Community College and Tech 2020 were established to support the incubator initiative.
- Creation of an economic and tourism development board comprised of county leaders.
- Development of a partnership with surrounding counties to establish the Cumberland Regional Business and Agribusiness Marketing Authority.
- Initial development of a county marketing program.
In the first twelve (12) months of the Campbell County program, the following was accomplished:
- Significant new economic and tourism initiatives were underway:
- Established full-time economic/tourism development director
- Began formulizing artist’s colony
- New/expanded tourist attractions
- Two new bed and breakfast resorts
- Zipline attraction
- Outdoor music/performing arts amphitheater
- Generated $400,000 grant for beautification projects
- The business incubators’ results:
- 36 total client companies served
- Of these, ten (10) were new starts
- Total number of jobs created or maintained = 190
- Number of new jobs added in the first year = 118
- Total annual revenue of client companies = $6.6M
- Total funding raised by clients (debt or equity) = $620K