Q3 Economic Developments

The Lake County Partners Quarterly E-Newsletter: September 2014

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Click here to see the economic indicator charts from the May 2014 e-newsletter.

Lake County Communities Take Steps to Implement New Marketing and Branding Campaigns to Boost Economic Development Efforts

Each of Lake County’s 52 communities are unique and contribute to the overall economic vitality of the county. Because of this diversity, Lake County benefits from a great variety of commercial districts which collectively contain over 30,000 businesses. Lake County’s municipalities make strategic investments to ensure that these businesses benefit from clean streets, inviting sidewalks, sufficient parking, safe lighting and consistent signage. Many have also recently taken the extra step to implement new marketing and branding campaigns to distinguish themselves and boost economic development efforts.

One such instance is the Village of Lake Zurich, where staff recently went through a process to redesign the Village seal, logo, slogan and website to highlight its downtown business district and its proximity to neighborhoods and Lake Zurich, as well as the strong influence that Lake Zurich High School has on the village. 

The Village of Mundelein recently worked with a branding and marketing consultant and a number of focus groups to redesign its logo in conjunction with the opening of its new village hall. The logo speaks to the community’s location in the middle of Lake County and was designed to relay Mundelein’s brand promise.

In the City of Highland Park, a local advisory committee worked with staff and the public to craft an identity for the community’s Ravinia business district that will be implemented through marketing, special events and future streetscape improvements along Roger Williams Avenue.

The Village of Lake Bluff  has also embarked on a branding study to reinforce village name recognition and draw attention to the local lifestyle, and the feel that it lends to the community. Throughout the process, Lake Bluff has intentionally kept tourism in mind as one of its key economic development drivers.

These represent just a few of the many examples of the innovative approaches that Lake County’s municipalities are taking to define their community characteristics and encourage reinvestment. “Communities can certainly benefit from taking a close look at who they are and the type of business development that they would like to encourage and expressing that message in the form of a fresh brandmark or sign package,” notes John Harris, Principal at a5, a Lake County Partners investor. “Branding can separate your community from others, providing clear differentiation so residents, businesses and visitors know what makes a particular community special. Yet it's more than a new logo and a tagline. That brand has to be extended to all communication efforts and projected outward to key audiences in a clear, concise, consistent and compelling way. Wayfinding, digital communication, advertising, events, PR - all of these and more - need to be central to a branding effort in order to achieve long-term success.”

Get to Know the College of Lake County’s Client Solutions and the Global Corporate College

The Client Solutions department within the Workforce and Professional Development Institute (WPDI) at the College of Lake County (CLC) provides training, consulting and courses for businesses, professionals and the community with a focus on five areas: Center for Personal Enrichment, Client Solutions, Continuing Professional Development, Illinois Small Business Development & International Trade Center and Judicial Services.

CLC is a founding member of the Global Corporate College (GCC)—an organization that provides customized, results-driven training and consulting programs for a wide-range of organizations. Through the GCC network of domestic community colleges and universities and 28 global partners, Client Solutions is now able to offer a variety of beneficial business services, including:

To learn how your business could benefit from this wide range of customizable training services, programs and courses, please visit: www.clcillinois.edu/solutions or call (847) 543-2615. For additional information on GCC, see: http://globalcorporatecollege.com/.

Schedule a Visit with Lake County Partners, Now Partnered with the Workforce Investment Board of Lake County (WIB)

We recently announced our partnership with the Workforce Investment Board of Lake County (WIB) for business outreach and retention services to address the skills gap in Lake County’s key industry sectors of manufacturing, healthcare and information technology. Though the primary focus of this service is on long-term industry planning as it relates to talent attraction and job growth, the initiative also has the added benefits of enhancing business relationships, raising awareness of economic and workforce development needs, increasing communication among core stakeholders and ensuring that future workforce services and strategies align with identified needs.

We are currently scheduling visits with companies in the targeted industry sectors, and ideally those that have between 15 and 350 employees. If you or a representative from your company would like to schedule a time to share your perspectives with us, please contact Economic Development Manager Barbara Cates at 847-597-1230 or bcates@lakecountypartners.com.

For additional information on the outreach program, click here visit our updated business webpage.

Lake County and the Chicago Metro Region Have Been Awarded the Manufacturing Communities Designation

Lake County is part of a regional effort to secure one of 12 nationwide “Manufacturing Community” designations awarded by the U.S. Commerce Department through the Investing in Manufacturing Communities Partnership (IMCP) —an initiative intended to support job creation and accelerate growth in the manufacturing sector. Through IMCP, 11 federal agencies and programs with over $1.3 billion in federal economic development assistance will coordinate efforts to support the strategies developed by each of the 12 designated communities.

More than 70 applications were submitted for the designation and each was evaluated based on strengths, opportunities and possible long-term impacts on job creation. Lake County Partners is proud to have participated in the Chicago Metro Region’s application process along with other local leaders in the area, and we look forward to continued collaboration and meaningful economic development dialogue with these partners.

For continuous updates on this initiative and its impact on the region, click here to visit our new webpage.

Explore Our New Interactive Map

We recently integrated an interactive map into the Lake County Partners website to illustrate a number of important business-related features in Lake County including the locations of our investors, Fortune 500 headquarters, municipalities, arts and entertainment venues, professional and technology services, major transit lines, higher education institutions, and Forest Preserves. The top bar of the map includes a toggle feature that allows you to turn on multiple layers at once, and each location pin may be easily expanded for contact information. We welcome you to explore this valuable new resource and bookmark it so that you can regularly return and refer to it.

Jobs are Being Created in Lake County - Hear the Latest on the Lake County Economy

Lake County is the only suburban county in the metropolitan region to have recently seen both a drop in the unemployment rate and an increase in the labor force—a strong sign that jobs are being created in Lake County. Learn more about the most recent statistics in this interview with Lake County Board Chairman Aaron Lawlor and Lake County Partners’ Executive Director Michael Stevens. 

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