The economic environment changes rapidly. To remain attractive for the already established companies and to attract new economic activities, it is imperative for cities and regions to have a solid marketing strategy and a comprehensive marketing plan.
Critical for a successful marketing strategy are an integral economic vision and the development of sound business concepts for improving the regional business climate.
At a regional scale level, the focus of a marketing strategy is on the development of business locations/sites/office parks/science parks/campuses. After development of the concept a feasibility assessment is next, followed by the realization of the new concept/business location and the organization of the marketing.
In developing a concept and proposition that are market and future proof, the following elements must be taken into account.
First, the proposition addresses specified target groups. Secondly, for a proposition it is necessary to have a clear definition of the competitive position compared with other competing locations, cities or regions. A city or region should be aware of its competitive advantages and disadvantages, conducting a benchmark study provides such insights. Finally, the branding of the location and its concept starts with a full understanding of the unique selling points.
Based on a well-thought and competitive site concept, the next step is to assess the feasibility of the concept and specify future demand by discussing the concept with market experts and leading end-users. Secondly, the market demand has to be forecasted. What can be expected from the local, regional and international market? Finally, an in-depth analysis of the proposed target groups is needed to define the type of companies that really fit with your concept. At the end of the feasibility assessment, a ‘go-no go’ decision has to be made, or a decision to adjust the concept.
Key issues in the route towards implementation are the co-operation with (potential) shareholders, stakeholders and (funding) partners and having a good understanding of the financial implications, timing, phasing of the development and project management.
The marketing plan sets out the so called marketing mix. This is an optimum mix of instruments and resources to ensure effective and efficient activities. Many marketing instruments are available. Yet, for every cluster, business site or science park/campus, you will have to develop a specific marketing mix, answering the question: how to allocate the available resources in the most effective and efficient way?
BCI offers an end-to-end solution in successful marketing of cities and regions, and in the development of successful business climates and locations.
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National, regional and local regions and investment agencies (partial listing)