New ad campaign gets 'Rock County Ready'
JANESVILLE When readers picked up their July 2 copy of Crain's, a noted Chicago business magazine, a prominent ad on Page 6 proclaimed:
"Just north of the border, signs of change are everywhere."
"Welcome to Wisconsin. Rock County."
The ad asked those reading to go to RockCountyReady.com.
It was the opening salvo of what is to be a three-month advertising campaign that spotlights Rock County and the business opportunities here.
Rock County 5.0 is a five-year public/private economic development initiative designed to reposition and revitalize the county's economy, will pay for the campaign at a cost of about $75,000.
The campaign was unveiled Monday to Beloit and Janesville public and elected officials. It emphasizes the "ready" aspects of Rock County's economic development efforts, with some subtle and timely business climate references, said James Otterstein, economic development manager for Rock County.
"In today's information and data intensive world, we simply want to ensure that decision makers have access to the right information as they consider where to place that next capital expenditure; invest in or grow an existing firm; or relocate a business to a more competitive, stable and value-added location," he said in a memo.
Elements of the campaign can be viewed by visiting RockCountyReady.com.
Ads promoting Rock County will be wrapped around downtown Chicago buses, on billboards and in direct mailings.
"Closed for business" has been the distorted message coming from the area, Otterstein said.
The goal is to get the attention of decision makers, business reporters and economists, he said.
The online media kit acknowledges Rock County has seen some tough economic times, said Andrew Janke, executive director of the Greater Beloit Economic Development Corporation.
"We're trying to change the image with some of these documents," Janke said.
The marketing kit includes a thumb drive available with two gigabytes of information about Rock County.
The advertising is not intended so much a "sharp stick in the eye" but a "kick to the shin" to Illinois, said Forward Janesville President John Beckord.
And Rock County wants it to sting, he said.
"We're trying to create a buzz over the next three months or so," Beckord said.