Tomorrow Becky McCray is hosting a webinar of 2017 rural and small town trends.
Becky is the founder and publisher of the rural small business site Small Biz Survival.
It's our"go to" site for information on rural and small town businesses and we highly recommend it.
The webinar is at 6:00 PM central time on Wednesday the 18th of January (that's tomorrow).
Becky has an article in Small Business Trends that provides an overview of 8 of the trends that will be covered in the webinar. My favorite 3 are:
Innovative Rural Business Models
Small town businesses are not just the mom-and-pop retail store downtown. We just talked about how those mom-and-pop retailers are going rural omni-local and how the independent workers are creating their own gigs. Other innovations are also taking hold. Smaller business experiments are replacing all-in bets on a full-size business, maybe filling only a couple of hundred square feet instead of 5,000 square feet. Temporary businesses pop-up for a day, a week or a season to test the waters. Mobile businesses gather up market share by moving from small town to small town. Shared spaces bring together co-working, artist’s studies and galleries, maker spaces and stores inside of other stores.
Travel Motivations Favor Rural
Small towns excel at offering authentic experiences. Visitors can easily connect with culture, history and a sense of place all in a walkable-sized package in a small town. International travelers are starting to make rural regions like the Deep South their first destination in the US, skipping traditional big city visits. Instead of checking famous sights off a list in a guidebook, they’re seeking out for the local artists, authentic foods and hidden gems recommended by friends and fellow travelers.
“Urban” Development Trends Sound More Like “Small Town”
Placemaking, walkability, Strong Towns and public spaces are all “urban” planning and development trends, and they all focus on making urban places more like small towns. Small towns already have compact, walkable cores in their downtowns. They have walkable distances in their historic development, and they already have built public spaces waiting for revitalizing activity. In small towns, it’s easier to get involved and make a difference, and a smaller project can make a bigger splash.
See the article for the other 5. And click here to register for the webinar.