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Commerce launches ‘RurAL’ campaign to promote rural Alabama

The Alabama Department of Commerce is launching a new digital marketing campaign, including an online site, that focuses on rural Alabama as a great place for doing business and the source of valuable products in demand around the world.

The centerpiece of the “RurAL” campaign is a content-rich website that showcases the business advantages of the state’s rural communities and shares the success stories that energize their economies.

The RurAL online platform will also serve as a hub for information and resources to assist economic developers working in Alabama’s rural counties, adding a new dimension to Commerce’s strategic effort to enhance the competitiveness of those areas for job-creating projects.

“Alabama’s rural counties are home to many of the world’s best-known companies and thousands of skilled workers and talented artisans creating first-class products,” Governor Kay Ivey said.

“The state’s rural communities are primed for business growth and economic development. I am firmly committed to helping rural Alabama realize its growth potential,” she added.

Alabama Commerce
Greg Canfield, secretary of the Alabama Department of Commerce, is launching the ‘RurAL’ campaign to assist rural areas in the economic development process.

“One thing that is often overlooked is that rural Alabama is a place of great innovation and industry.”



The ‘RurAL’ campaign represents an extension of Commerce’s “Made in Alabama” branding campaign, which launched in 2013 to chronicle economic development announcements and elevate awareness of the state’s attractiveness for investment and job creation.

“While economic developers working in rural areas often face a specific set of challenges, we know that these communities offer advantages that are sometimes overlooked,” said Greg Canfield, Secretary of the Alabama Department of Commerce.

“We think the RurAL campaign will help us highlight the business opportunities to be discovered in these communities.”

Visit the RurAL website.

UNLOCKING POTENTIAL

The overall objective of the campaign is to help corporate decision-makers and site selection consultants understand that growth potential. In fact, rural Alabama is already home to the operations of many high-profile manufacturers and a growing network of auto suppliers from around the globe.

Foreign direct investment in Alabama’s rural counties approached $1.5 billion between 2015 to 2019, according to Commerce estimates. Since the Alabama Jobs Act went into effect in July 2015, incentivized projects have brought over $4 billion in new capital investment to the state’s “targeted” counties, Commerce data shows.

Alabama rural development
Brenda Tuck is the Alabama Department of Commerce’s first rural development manager.

“One thing that is often overlooked is that rural Alabama is a place of great innovation and industry,” said Brenda Tuck, Commerce’s rural development manager.

“Through this new campaign, we can tell the story of what rural Alabama has to offer and shine a light on the industries that are there and the quality of life that exists in these communities.”

In her role, Tuck works directly with economic developers and others in Alabama’s 40 “targeted” counties, those with fewer than 50,000 people, to help them become better prepared to compete for new facilities and expansion projects.

The ‘RurAL’ campaign was created by Birmingham-based Big Communications, which has directed Commerce’s ‘Made in Alabama’ brand since 2013.

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