Last year I wrote about state and national affinity programs in ND and Scotland. My blog prompted Monica L. Babine of Washington State University’s Center to Bridge the Digital Divide to email me with a community workshop that they have developed to help communities set up their own ambassador program. I love what they call their program: Who Loves Ya, Baby?
She wrote me, “We too have been following the ND Ambassador program and looking for other affinity type marketing models (States - Come Home Montana, Move Back to Nebraska, Come Back to Maine; Cities – Spokane, WA, Louisville, KY; and a ton of college alumni associations). As you’ll recall, our case studies http://www.cbdd.wsu.edu/initiatives/ework/employerres02.html demonstrate that common theme – these businesses are where they are because of a personal relationship or affinity for the area. We see affinity as one of the greatest assets rural communities have to offer. It also eliminates pitting communities against each other during recruitment efforts since you target those who are interested in your community. And, unlike companies that select a town based on incentives, those with an affinity who locate there tend to also work to make the community a better place.”
I couldn’t have said it any better. Check out the great things they are doing at the Digital Divide.