BUFFALO, NY: The oft-maligned city of Buffalo is looking to attract more businesses to Northern New York - as well as to reverse its image as a wintery wasteland - and has launched an ambitious dollars 27 million marketing effort, up to 10% of which will be spent on PR.
BUFFALO, NY: The oft-maligned city of Buffalo is looking to attract
more businesses to Northern New York - as well as to reverse its image
as a wintery wasteland - and has launched an ambitious dollars 27
million marketing effort, up to 10% of which will be spent on PR.
The Buffalo Niagara Enterprise (BNE), a public/private partnership
formed earlier this year, has pledged to raise dollars 27 million over
the next five years to market the area to the business world. The group
recently hired Development Counsellors International, a New York
City-based integrated shop that specializes in economic development
work, to handle media relations and other PR functions. Eric Mower &
Associates was hired to do Buffalo-area PR and ads.
’There is a vacuum of good news coming out of Buffalo,’ said DCI EVP Rob
DeRocker. ’Buffalo has been a no-show in the media.’
According to BNE president and CEO Tom Kucharski, the dollars 27 million
his group plans to spend on marketing is the largest non-government
economic development budget in the country. Three-quarters of that money
is coming from Buffalo-area companies, with the rest being put up by
local governments on both sides of the US/Canada border.
The planned PR campaign will emphasize the area’s skilled workforce.
While the local 5.5% unemployment rate is low by historic standards, it
is still higher than the national average.
’We have a demonstrably large base of employees with a work heritage
that is still very impressive,’ said Kucharski.
The campaign recently got underway with a black-tie dinner in New York
City attended by more than 400 business leaders. ’It was a statement to
the world that Buffalo plans to get serious about economic development,’
Overcoming Buffalo’s image of Buffalo as a cold, snowy locale may prove
as daunting a marketing challenge as increasing the number of businesses
in the area. Kucharski said the campaign will emphasize ’livability’
issues, such as local cultural attractions and universities, as well as
the large portions of the spring, summer and fall when Buffalo isn’t
If 10% of the dollars 27 million goes towards PR, that equates to PR
spending of dollars 540,000 per year. It is unclear how much will be
earmarked for other marketing components. Among the industries that the
marketing team plans to target are information technology, healthcare
manufacturing, warehousing and support services.