Three firms to position Rhode Island as attractive to jobs, tourists

PROVIDENCE, RI: Rhode Island is banking on three specialty PR firms to position the state as a place where executives will want to do business.

PROVIDENCE, RI: Rhode Island is banking on three specialty PR firms to position the state as a place where executives will want to do business.

The new management team of the Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation decided against a "one-size-fits-all" PR approach, said Townsend Goddard, its director of marketing and communications.

Instead, the economic agency opted for three firms with specific strengths.

The publicly funded agency is using communications to bring more jobs to the state, as well as to increase tourism.

For its overall PR work, the agency has selected Providence-based Cutler Communications.

The economic agency will retain its former firm, Duffy & Shanley, also based in Providence, for business development and marketing.

A third local agency, Trion Communications, also has been selected for project work, but the contracts for that work have yet to be awarded, Goddard said.

Cutler's first action on behalf of the state Economic Development Corporation is to form a strategic communications plan.

"It's really a way of packaging Rhode Island as a friendly place" for entrepreneurship, the life sciences, and technology, said Andrew Cutler, the firm's president and CEO.

The five-month-long RFP process yielded 20 responses. Goddard noted that the agency has yet to finalize the PR budget.

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