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Retail group hosts ‘Selling in Down Economy’ speaker

July 1, 2011
By Josh Moniz - Staff Writer ( , The Journal

NEW ULM - The New Ulm Retail Development Corporation (NURDC) and Minnesota Main Street hosted a presentation Thursday on "Selling in a Down Economy."

The presentation speaker was Sylvia Allen, a well-know sponsorship and fundraising expert. She identified the best way for community-focused organizations to sell sponsorships, but she applied her lesson in way that would equally resonate with businesses.

She listed several tactics for tight financial times, including offering creative financing options, keeping in contact with former buyers even if they are not buying right now, emphasizing contact with recession resistant industries and avoiding becoming discouraged.

She explained that organizations needed to be more aggressive in recessions because cutbacks could cost them long-term. She pointed to studies done by McGraw-Hill, Bain and Co. and McKinsey and Co. that showed companies that cut in recession not only lost market share, but also had to spend twice as much to regain it later.

She emphasized that a key tactic was to show people how they benefit from a partnership, such as buying sponsorship, as opposed to the features they will have access to.

The presentation was a collaboration between NURDC and Minnesota Main Street, an economic development program that seeks to help communities capitalize on their historical downtowns. Minnesota Main Street is a program of the Preservation Alliance of Minnesota. NURDC is its fifth and newest member.

Representatives of various community-minded economic non-profit organizations from Faribault, Gaylord, Belle Plaine, Brainerd, Red Wing, Windom and Luverne attended the speech.



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