The La Salle City Council is considering a new economic development website proposal that Peru bought into earlier this week.
On Tuesday night the council heard a presentation from Mike Schmidt, president of MCS Advertising, on his new subsidiary Development Delivered.
Through Development Delivered Schmidt would provide the city with “a true economic development website.”
Separate from the city’s current website, this new site would feature content directed toward meeting the needs of business developers who may be considering a project in the city. Development Delivered would also create an economic development magazine and e-book for the city to share with potential developers. Depending on the level of service the city purchased, Development Delivered would send “proactive” e-mail messages to a database of more than 13,000 developers in theUnited States, Schmidt said.
Schmidt offered to waive a $7,500 set-up fee, as he’s trying to build his client base, but the city would be charged $500 to $1,000 per month depending on how many e-blasts would be sent to developers per year. Schmidt said he would prefer the city sign on to a three-year commitment.
The council chose not to act Tuesday night. The issue will likely come up again at the next council meeting.
Alderman Tom Ptak said his initial reaction was the service came with a high monthly cost. Schmidt said much of the cost is associated with acquiring the developer contact database. He also said customizing a site forLa Sallewould require a considerable amount of work.
Ptak also questioned how many developers would actually respond to the e-blast. Schmidt said he would like to see a 2 to 5 percent click-through rate for the messages.
Marci Duro, executive director of the Illinois Valley Area Chamber of Commerce and Economic Development, shared her thoughts on the new Development Delivered service Wednesday morning.
“I think it will enhance what we are already doing,” she said.
Duro said site selectors want to be able to find up-to-date information online when it’s most convenient for them.
“I think every little bit helps,” she said.
In regards to the e-blast messaging capabilities, she said the information she has received site selection experts and in conferences is that technique is “not exactly one of the successful ways of doing things” since site selectors are constantly being targeted with information. It could be useful if Development Delivered has found a better way to cut through the clutter of emails people receive, she said.
In other business:
* Alderman Jim Bacidore and Joe Edgcomb announced there will be a public meeting to discuss methods to alleviate rundown properties in the city at 5 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 5 in council chambers, City Hall.
* City election paperwork is now available in the city clerk’s office. Candidates can file paperwork from Dec. 17-24. Seats up for election in the spring are mayor, one alderman in each ward (4), clerk and treasurer.
* The council granted the Zonta Club of La Salle-Peru Area permission to collect donations at various businesses for their Buckets of Love project 8 a.m.-noon Saturday, Oct. 13. La Salle Little League was given permission to collect donations at various businesses on March 29-30.