The city of Greenville unveiled its brand-new national marketing initiative Thursday morning in a move to encourage entrepreneurs and executives to launch, grow and maintain their businesses in the city and greater Greenville County.
Modeled after the “YeahTHATGreenville” marketing initiative and developed hand-in-hand with local business owners and economic development groups, “From Here You Can Change the World” will promote the city’s “ambitious, collaborative” entrepreneurial nature, Mayor Knox White said Thursday.
“From Here You Can Change the World” seeks to capitalize on Greenville’s reputation as a thriving destination of choice, according to a press release. The pitch aims to have national reach and highlights stories from different entrepreneurs in Greenville to illustrate the investment, support and economic initiatives available in the city, as well as Greenville’s quality of life, cultural amenities, cost of living and environment.
The initiative will educate business founders about available tools including funding resources, incubators and accelerator programs, coaching and mentorship opportunities, networking events, business start-up and growth resources, economic development organizations and co-working spaces, creating a one-stop-shop for entrepreneurs.
“From Here You Can Change the World” includes:
- A website with testimonials, resources, events, programming, jobs, etc.
- Local and national advertising
- Entrepreneur and founder profiles
- Social media channels
- Local and national public relations and media outreach
- Content delivery, including a planned newsletter, podcasts, and a blog
- Branded collateral and presentation materials for prospects and media targets
The initiative will also make use of a new hashtag, #youcangreenvillesc, modeled after the #yeahTHATGreenville hashtag.
The city wanted to invest in economic development, White said — invest in the process, work with traditional partners and broaden that net to bring in new, diverse, different partners.
Greenville’s aspirational, ambitious, bold spirit can be seen in downtown, in Falls Park, in the city’s private-public partnerships and in the residents who call the city home, White said. Now, this initiative will highlight that spirit for entrepreneurs, too.
“We’re making a bet on this, I guess is what I’m saying,” White said. “We’re going to put money, time and effort into betting that we can mix this up a little bit more, bring in more partners and really reflect the true Greenville that we know today.”
The marketing initiative kicked off Thursday with an event featuring speakers including White, Greenville City Manager John McDonough, Venture Pitch Carolina President Alex Estevez, Furman University President Elizabeth Davis, Clemson University Director of the Center for Advanced Manufacturing Mark Johnson, Greenville Chamber of Commerce President Carlos Phillips and city of Greenville Director of Economic Development Merle Johnson as well as testimonials from local entrepreneurs.
Guests included more than 250 local business, government, economic development and higher-education leaders.
Kenzie Biggins, founder of executive assistant solutions company Worxbee, said Greenville’s cost of living and strong sense of community brought her to the city.
“I could take the time to really figure it out and grow our company in a really meaningful way because I wasn’t just spending all my time trying to fundraise or spending all my time trying to make ends meet in a huge, expensive city,” Biggins said.
The new platform shows people why Greenville is a great place to come and run a small business, she said.
“I think it’s educating people on what Greenville is as a business community,” she said.
Carlos Phillips, president of the Greenville Chamber of Commerce, called the initiative “a bold and exciting step for Greenville.”
“I’ve often heard that what got you here won’t get you there. But I am convinced that from here — from here — we can and we will change Greenville and the world,” Phillips said.
To learn more about the initiative, visit youcangreenvillesc.com online.
Macon Atkinson is the city watchdog reporter for The Greenville News. She’s powered by long runs and strong coffee. Follow her on Twitter @maconatkinson.