YCDC Promotes York County Nationally
24 January 2023
York County, Nebraska, is an incredible place to raise a family, build a career, and start and operate a business. The County is growing and creating investment opportunities in the process. One of the greatest challenges is that few people know the county outside of Nebraska. This lack of awareness makes promoting and marketing the opportunities here of utmost importance. It’s the only way talent and businesses will consider coming here. “We understand intimately that it is our responsibility to market York County to a national audience. York County Development Corporation has taken on this challenge because we know how important it is to attract talent and investment to our communities,” said Lisa Hurley, Executive Director of York County Development Corporation (YCDC).
Because the audience is so large and diverse, YCDC has taken several approaches to marketing the county. “We don’t want to miss anyone,” said Emily Perry, Development Coordinator. “If you look at our social media, listen to our podcasts or see ads, you’ll notice that some are targeting young adults like myself, while others could be targeting business executives and entrepreneurs. We try to promote York County in a way that makes sense to our audience.”
Some of this promotion has achieved state and national acclaim. A few years ago, York County Development Corporation engaged Golden Shovel Agency to develop virtual reality site tours, including one featuring York’s 34-acre site and virtual familiarization tours for workforce attraction. YCDC also produced Why York videos demonstrating why York County is an incredible place to live through the eyes of residents. The Why York County videos feature community members like Daniel Grotz, Jim and Jamie Ulrich, Marcus and Angela Ruhl, and the Hain family. These personal interest stories are an excellent way to showcase what life is like in York County and why people love it here.
As for the VR site tours, they prompted Business Facilities Magazine to feature York County’s 34-acre site (now occupied), which allowed YCDC to promote company expansions, including Klute Inc’s and Corteva’s. They provided readers with a link to the virtual spec building and virtual reality video, which was fantastic exposure for York County.
The State of Nebraska also recognized York and YCDC’s work when writing, “More than $60 million in business investments in the city of York (pop. 7,832) have created a national platform for new development and earned accolades from the State of Nebraska... Starting in 2017, the City partnered with YCDC to complete due diligence, master planning, and marketing of a 34-acre industrial site. This included a 2020 virtual flyover video and virtual reality video of a virtual spec building, which resulted in a 2021 International Economic Development Council (IEDC) Award for multi-media production to showcase the site’s virtual spec building.” The IEDC Award gave York County, and our available sites, additional exposure.
“These site videos were enormously helpful when promoting York County to potential companies. The 34-acre site and Waco Building are full now, and I believe our combined marketing efforts played a key role in that success,” said Hurley.
Not content to rest in previous accomplishments, Hurley has led YCDC and her team forward, doubling down on advertising that will create awareness of York County’s many assets. This includes an aggressive workforce awareness campaign through the York News-Times. “We are working to create awareness of the opportunities in York County for people who may have ties here but have moved away,” said Carrie Colburn, Publisher of the York News-Times. The campaign has been incredibly successful. In 2022 alone, 249,497 people saw the ads.
YCDC’s additional advertising platforms include:
- YCDC website - site visits were up by 22% in 2022
- Podcast - 66 episodes have been produced, with listeners in 22 countries
- Conway national business ads targeting site selectors and executives
- Social media campaigns - ongoing
- Speaking engagements - Lisa Hurley represents York County at events in and outside of Nebraska
“We are taking every reasonable opportunity to market and promote York County. Our team is creative, active, and working with our partners daily to draw attention to the many reasons businesses should invest in York County and families should move here,” said Hurley. “I get to champion my home every day, which I love doing. I encourage everyone who also loves York County to share the social media, podcasts, and videos we produce to reach an even larger audience in 2023.”