Marketing Small Towns: A Preliminary Investigation

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Katherine A. Fraccastoro
Komal Karani


Marketing Small Towns, Tourism Marketing, Business Marketing, Place Marketing


This study is a preliminary investigation into the marketing processes used by small towns/cities to attract business revenue and tourism dollars. Because small town governments do not have the resources of large cities to spend on marketing, it is unclear if they utilize the marketing process in a manner similar to large cities or businesses. Personal interviews were used to determine the process by which small towns attract businesses to their area as well as develop tourism. Small towns must develop business opportunities to encourage economic development in their cities as well as create tourism opportunities to increase the economic impact in the area. The findings indicate that, while some similarities exist due to common goals, different processes are used by different size cities. While the process for economic development through the attraction of businesses is similar in most cities, the process to create tourism differs for small towns. The smaller towns do not utilize the full marketing process which could create a better brand identity that could make them more successful. Instead, they take a more entrepreneurial approach by sharing resources and developing partnerships with other small towns to utilize their resources more effectively.


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