I am in Denver, Colorado for the 7th Annual (yet my first) BALLE Conference. BALLE is the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies. BALLE’s Mission is to build Local Living Economies in North America that foster vibrant communities, a healthy natural environment, and prosperity for all. This is done through:
Catalyzing, strengthening, and connecting networks of locally owned independent businesses
Providing education and community economic development tools; and
Developing and promoting public policies that enable Local Living Economies to thrive
Paul Jensen from One Tribe Creative of Ft. Collins, CO offered a breakout session full of helpful tips for marketing local (and other) socially and environmentally responsible organizations and businesses. Of these, I found the following most helpful: (1) A brand really is others’ perception of your organization — it’s the relationship that your community has with you; and (2) branding is the way in which you tell your story, which you must do continually to thrive.
Paul used the Be Local Northern Colorado campaign that One Tribe worked on to demonstrate several ways in which an organization can brand themselves locally in order to showcase and increase the value they offer to their community. Gailmarie Kimmel, the Co-E.D. of Be Local Northern CO also shared her experiences with the branding of her BALLE network.
What a refreshing way to conclude a great conference!