Sierra Madre will soon become its own brand... sort of.
After hiring Buxton Co. to conduct a market demand study for Sierra Madre, the City Council Tuesday agreed to implement their suggestions.
The goal is to help retain businesses, grow new businesses, attract more consumers and develop a marketing and branding program for Sierra Madre.
"Shop, Dine, Visit Sierra Madre"
The City will possibly create a “Shop, Dine, Visit Sierra Madre” program to market the town. Developing a webpage and using social media outlets like Twitter and Facebook to emphasis that Sierra Madre is an “outdoor person’s paradise” with hiking, biking and dog-friendly areas to walk about and shop, is one idea being discussed.
The Council still needs to decide who to market Sierra Madre to. Possibilities include residents living in Sierra Madre, people coming into town for work or school, people inside or outside the City’s market trade area, or people looking for daytime destinations.
A Marketing Committee of Mayor Pro Tem Nancy Walsh and Council Member John Capoccia has been formed to discuss possibilities. Staff is looking for other individuals from the community who might be interested in joining this committee.
Helping Existing Businesses Reach More Customers
The bottom line is: If consumers can’t get what they want in Sierra Madre, they will go elsewhere.
So, the City plans on working with the Chamber of Commerce to arrange business forums and introduce them to a Business Retention Package which will include information on area demographics, how to identify their customer base, and defining the consumer needs of that base.
“It’s going to take all of us to talk to business owners to try to get them enthused,” said Mayor Pro Tem Nancy Walsh. “They are going to want to hear about what is going on and what this market study is going to do for them.”
Chamber Council President Ed Chen offered full support to the City Council. “This Board stands very ready to meet some of these calls for action. The Board is quite excited about this particular tool the City has visioned,” Chen said. “It’s going to help our business retention and improvement.”
Entice New Businesses to Open in Sierra Madre
In order to drum up more business in the area, Buxton has prepared a list of retail businesses that may be good suitors to open up shop in town.
Council created a “Business Recruitment” subcommittee composed of Mayor Pro Tem Nancy Walsh, Councilmember John Harabedian and a member of City Staff to contact and help recruit new business in the area.
Offering incentives such as sales tax rebates, license fee reduction and free advertising may be some options that will be offered.
Cost of the Study
The Buxton study cost the city $30,000, and the money came from the now-defunct redevelopment fund in 2011.
A financial review on the costs involved in implementing this study will be presented by City staff at a future date. Cost estimates for staff time, business incentives and marketing/branding initiatives will be totaled.
For more background on the study, check out this article: