The Development Authority of Cobb County spent $13,000 to run a 10-second video advertisement for Cobb County on the 520-square-foot video screen that lines the street where the ball drops on New Year’s Eve. The ad is guaranteed to run at least 18 times each day from July 1 to Sept. 30.
The video clip shows photos of companies headquartered in Cobb, including the Home Depot and GE Energy. The ad also promotes the new Braves stadium.
This was one of multiple paid advertisements in print, radio and online media that the authority previously approved, spending a total of $60,000 on out of its annual budget from April to September.
Board member Donna Rowe said Cobb was already successfully attracting businesses from other parts of the state, so advertising across the country is the best way to lure more businesses here.
“There’s a lot of places looking to move — to move out of New York because of the taxes there,” Rowe said. “A lot of their people don’t mind moving to Atlanta. When you say ‘Atlanta,’ they don’t mind that as much as some other cities in the South.”
Brooks Mathis, vice president of the Cobb Chamber of Commerce, told the board Cobb’s biggest competitors in attracting new businesses are Dallas, Texas and Nashville, Tenn.
Mathis said Cobb competes with local areas, but not at the same level because Cobb has more to offer than bordering counties.
“As far as competition here, we will compete with maybe Perimeter, Sandy Springs and Midtown if a company is looking at Atlanta, but it’s more of a real estate decision that has nothing to do with competitiveness. We don’t really have that much competition here,” Mathis said.
Rowe said Cobb is home to a variety of businesses, which makes it an attractive place to relocate.
“We are not just based on one industry, so if that industry goes under, we don’t,” Rowe said. “Even if we do have bad times, we stabilize quickly.”
The stability that comes from multiple industries here is more attractive to businesses than the risk of relying on a single one, as Detroit did with its auto industry, she said.
At its Tuesday meeting, the authority voted 6-0, with Karen Hallacy absent, to approve spending another $30,000 on marketing between September and December.
Board member Al Searcy said he was pleased with the advertising efforts, which were organized by Mathis and Amy Selby, the chamber’s marketing director.
“I, for one, am very impressed with what you’ve done and what you plan to do,” Searcy said.
The marketing campaign to promote economic growth in Cobb, which is a continuation of a campaign with a similar mission in 2013, focuses on reaching out to people and businesses in other large cities in the country to entice them to move to the Atlanta area.
This year, the development authority will spend $90,000 of its budget on advertising, compared to the $75,000 it spent last year, said Clark Hungerford, board chairman.
In addition to the video in Times Square, Cobb was advertised in Georgia Trend Magazine, for $12,000, Atlanta Magazine for $3,000 and the Atlanta Business Chronicle for $15,000.
The print advertisements were in the form of articles written about Cobb to promote specific projects, such as the Braves stadium, or the county’s economic environment as a whole, Selby said.
“We paid to have their staff interview us and put together a story,” Selby said.
Cobb was also advertised on WABE 90.1 FM radio shows Morning Edition, a morning news show, and Marketplace, a business news show, from April to May for $7,000.
Digital ads about Cobb were posted on Site Selection’s website, which is a corporate real estate magazine, for $10,000.
Selby said as a result of the increase in advertising, hits on the authority’s website, selectcobb.com, have nearly doubled since last year. From April to August in 2014, the website had 4,700 page views, compared to the 2,800 it had during the same time in 2013.
“This year we’ve had almost double the traffic (on the website), so you can really see the results,” Selby said.
The board had no qualms with approving more funding for the advertisements Tuesday.
“I think this is exceptional,” Rowe said.