Best Practices
August 6, 2008

Business-Music Collaborative Shows Des Moines "Feels Like Home"

The Greater Des Moines Partnership

Entering into an innovative collaborative centered on workforce development, the Greater Des Moines (IA) Partnership and the roots rock band The Nadas have teamed up to promote the Iowa state capitol as a destination for young professionals looking to live and work in a vibrant city. As part of their "Do More in Des Moines" campaign, the Partnership commissioned the hometown band to write an anthem about the city, and the result, "Feels Like Home," is the official song of the community and lead single from the band's new album. It is also the score to the Partnership's workforce recruitment DVD, complete with testimonials from Des Moines residents about the city's opportunities and quality of life.

In addition, the Nadas are taking the message on the road. The Partnership is sponsoring the band's 100 city tour in support of their new album. At shows, the volunteers hand out marketing DVDs, t-shirts, coasters and post-it notes emblazoned with the "Do More" brand. The band themselves do a promo from the stage about Des Moines and the "Do More" campaign, and talk with the crowd before and after many of the shows. The Partnership also has a promotion to win a free weekend in Des Moines, by way of the DVD.

In venues across the country, the campaign reaches out to former residents as well as those who might be unfamiliar with Iowa's quality of life and career opportunities. The week-long music festival in Austin, TX known as South by Southwest (SXSW), a major music industry event which attracts over 150,000 music fans, was the kickoff event to the sponsorship. "The majority of the people who attend SXSW aren't your typical professionals," says Mary Bontrager, executive vice president of community development for the Greater Des Moines Partnership. "They are individuals with day jobs who spend their weekends pursuing their passion – music. We got their attention by showing them their passion is alive and well in Greater Des Moines, that they can get a great job and also have the great life they've dreamed about."

You can view the "Do More in Des Moines" video on the Partnership's website.