Risk or Reward: Holly Springs Lets Businesses Speak
Those of us in the business of promoting our communities are knowledgeable and passionate about our places. But too often we can get caught up in our own perceptions of our towns and don’t take the time to listen to our constituents -- or maybe we’re secretly afraid to hear the bad stuff.
Recently, when we created a video about our community, we decided we wanted to hear directly from Holly Springs business owners and residents themselves – who better to explain why businesses should consider locating to our town? The resulting eight-minute video, “Holly Springs is Ready,” features business owners and scenes from our active, vibrant community. Both of our breweries – Carolina Brewing Company and Bombshell Beer Company – are featured in the video and share their views on Holly Springs.
While we were traveling with our videographer to interview different business leaders, sometimes the people we interviewed asked us if we had anything in particular we wanted them to say. Our answer was no. We wanted the comments to be honest and unrehearsed. Watching the final video and hearing praise from our diverse community of business leaders brought tears to our eyes --literally.
Leaders talk candidly about why Holly Springs is ready for today and for the future, touching on a variety of topics: our fiber optic network circling the Holly Springs Business Park, available workforce, international accessibility, business-friendly government, and the congenial nature of this tight-knit community. But enough of us talking about ourselves already! Watch the video and see for yourself why globally renowned companies are attracted to Holly Springs and how our local businesses enjoy an international client base.
We unveiled “Holly Springs is Ready” at our annual Economic Development Partners Event in front of 150 guests from the Research Triangle region and international guests visiting Novartis. While the Partners’ event always offers an opportunity to network with business and community leaders, it also showcases our town and is entirely funded by sponsors. This year, our event reception was held at the Daniel Dhers Action Sports Complex, a 37,000 square foot indoor/outdoor BMX and skateboard facility recently opened by five-time X-Games Gold Medalist Daniel Dhers. Daniel has become one of our most vocal ambassadors, sharing the story of his new facility in Holly Springs everywhere from the Bloomberg report to www.investorideas.com to his Facebook page with more than 224,000 followers.
In addition to the “Holly Springs is Ready” video, 14 short video testimonials featuring each leader we interviewed also are available on our website, http://hollyspringsnc.org.
We took a risk in creating the videos, in allowing our business community to speak unscripted instead of writing our own narrative. But we found that our business leaders realize and respect our town government’s work - building infrastructure, amenities, and community. Letting business owners speak for themselves ended up not being a risk – it was a reward.