New campaign encouraging people to 'Pick Pipestone'

·4 min read

The R.M. of Pipestone has launched a new campaign designed to encourage people and residents to “Pick Pipestone” in a series of video clips.

The idea for the Pick Pipestone campaign emerged just under a year ago, said Pipestone manager of economic development Tanis Chalmers, and it evolved into a series of videos about what makes the municipality special.

“We’ve made the videos really engaging,” Chalmers said.

Filming for the shorts took place throughout the year. The videos are being released as editing is completed. They will be between one and two minutes long.

“It was a bit of shop local but also the concept of investment attraction. The R.M. of Pipestone has always been looking at attracting visitors as well as new residents and businesses [and] enterprises. We want to see people coming to work in the area,” Chalmers said. “They’re more of a commercial where you get the key highlights of the communities and the area; it’s really to engage you to a point that you want to learn more.”

The R.M. of Pipestone has created different marketing campaigns in the past centred on encouraging residents to shop local. Pick Pipestone marks their first foray into video clips and has been a conscious effort to modernize how they market the municipality.

Chalmers said they looked to larger centres and found in many cases, people were attracted to niche videos where they could have quick and informative engagement that leaves them wanting to learn more.

About 14 videos have been created for the first part of the series. The goal when creating the media was to ensure they were emphasizing niche businesses and opportunities within the municipality.

It was an intense process to create the quick clips, Chalmers said. A videographer was in the community for a week and two local cast members gave their time to help bring the concept together.

“We filmed in shifts with our two actors and we put in probably 10-hour days, if not more, to get the videos completed within the week,” Chalmers said. “It’s just highlighting what we have to offer.”

She said they ensured all four communities within the municipality were included in the campaign.

“We picked one business from each community of the four. As well, we tried to pick a business that had a niche opportunity that may engage the audience,” Chalmers said. “The people that we picked to be in the videos, we picked them because we wanted people to relate to them.”

The videos are geared toward the 30- to 50-year-old demographic, specifically people and businesses that are looking to relocate.

If the campaign finds success, the R.M. will possibly make more videos to highlight different businesses.

A larger targeted campaign will launch in January in tandem with the videos. Depending on how the January campaign goes, there may be an opportunity to expand the program.

Chalmers said success will be based on analytics, fielding emails or calls that come through and gauging if there is an increase in parties looking to learn more or relocate to the municipality.

“It’s definitely a positive way to get our name out there as a place to do business, visit [and] relocate,” Chalmers said.

One of the videos focuses on the R.M. of Pipestone’s $10 Lot program. Through the program, residential properties are available for $10. They spoke with a family that participated in the program to highlight the $10 lots along with different images of available spaces.

The $10 Lot program has been running for about 12 years and includes properties throughout the municipality. Residents can pick an available lot and put down a $1,000 deposit. They have 90 days from the closing date of the offer to begin building a residence, and 12 months to complete construction. Once completed and final permits are in place, they receive a $990 rebate back from the municipality.

“We have inquiries about the program basically on a daily basis. About 10 years ago the program went viral throughout the world and so we’ve really made a presence on the internet with that campaign,” Chalmers said.

She added the tourism video is also especially interesting as it highlights what there is to see and do in the municipality, along with the quality of life available.

“In the last five years, we’ve been focusing on affordable recreation,” Chalmers said. “The spray park is part of that, as well as the lake, golfing, kayaking, camping, and we actually have a five-acre park located right in Reston,” Chalmers said.

She hopes those who see the videos are inspired to check out the R.M. of Pipestone website, give the municipality a call or come check out the community in-person to find out more.

» ckemp@brandonsun.com

» Twitter: @The_ChelseaKemp

Chelsea Kemp, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Brandon Sun

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