Main Street: Making the Connection
Diane Comer
Public Information, Kentucky Heritage Council

Main Street is, by far, the most cost effective form of economic development of any kind, anywhere in the country.
Donovan Rypkema

No argument about the effectiveness of this established program

However, if the National Main Street Center was created today, no doubt the rollout would be marketed very differently, and branding of local programs a prime consideration

Today we are all much more aware of the power of branding due to communications saturation through the media, entertainment industry, explosion of radio and satellite stations, social media

What do we mean when we talk about a brand ?

The name Main Street is the brand. The Main Street concept is the franchise

Main Street is also a registered trademark:
Main Street Four-Point Approach 

But, nowhere in the 10 standards of performance is the word brand or franchise mentioned

How is Main Street a franchise?

Franchising began back in the 1850’s when Isaac Singer invented the sewing machine

In 1955 Ray Kroc took franchising to a whole new level with a tiny company called McDonald’ s

Franchising allows entrepreneurs to be in business for themselves, but not by themselves. The same pertains to Main Street!

Franchisees gain:
Privileges including the right to sell or market a proven and recognized product or service, use the franchisor’s business practices, and receive training and ongoing support
Advantage over nonfranchisee competitors, given the franchise agreement provides rights to use the franchisor’s already established brand names, trademarks, copyrights, trade secrets, and patents
Use of that franchise name -may be unique in the local market, though with already established strong national or international brand recognition

Responsibilities in return include:
Restrictions on how something is made, what can be sold or how a company can operate using the franchise name
Specifications for business locations and site appearance
Restrictions on how the brand name can be used

Source: Franchising.com

There is usually a much higher likelihood of success when an individual opens a franchise as opposed to a mom and pop business, since a proven business formula is in place. The products, services, and business operations have already been established.
-Franchising.com

Developing a Brand: a Work in Progress
| Tuesday, May 20 | 10:45 a.m – 12 p.m. | Room: Ambassador Salon I | Session Track: MC
When branding, downtowns often hire specialists, come up with taglines, and call it a day. But creating a strategic brand identity and developing that brand in a way that gains internal and external audience adoption must be a dedicated work in progress. It’s really a pretty simple formula: Strategic Brand Identity + Brand Development = Brand Value. This session will clarify the terms Strategic Brand Identity, Brand Development, and Brand Value. Participants will find out why a “Brand” is much more than a logo, and discuss long-term brand development strategies.

Policy on Use of the Name Main Street
The National Trust for Historic Preservation owns the trademark for the phrase “Main Street as it applies to the revitalization of traditional and historic commercial districts. The Trust allows local, regional, state, and citywide organizations involved in the revitalization of these commercial districts to use the name “Main Street” to describe their programs according to prescribed guidelines.

The words Main Street connote community, home, America and apple pie

Wall Street talks about Main Street meaning the overall economy and how it is impacting us all

In the context of the Main Street program, Main Street encompasses much more geographically than simply Main Street

After 35 years Main Street certainly needs rethinking to meet the changing context of our downtowns and neighborhood districts, but the framework of the forces of value as embodied within the Four Points needs to remain the same.
-Donovan Rypkema

Change is happening as NMSC realigns, and KYMS will be taking our cues from the national program

Stay tuned during the next year or two

KYMS and KHC will be working with you as well as NMSC to implement any mandated changes

Most important, this is an opportunity for you to rethink how you communicate about your local program, and whether you are fully capitalizing on the PR power behind this local-state-national network

Being part of this national network makes you stronger -among local constituents as well as elected officials and decision makers

Surveyed news stories over several years, but in the last few months specifically -articles about local programs featuring promotions, activities and events, reporting to local commissions, or even addressing controversial decisions, only 4 referenced the local program in affiliation with KYMS, and 0 referenced NMSC (other than stories specifically about achieving accreditation)

Surveyed news stories over several years, but in the last few months specifically -articles about local programs featuring promotions, activities and events, reporting to local commissions, or even addressing controversial decisions, only 4 referenced the local program in affiliation with KYMS, and 0 referenced NMSC (other than stories specifically about achieving accreditation)

 

An agency of the Kentucky Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet, the Kentucky Heritage Council / State Historic Preservation Office is responsible for the identification, protection and preservation of prehistoric resources and historic buildings, sites and cultural resources throughout the Commonwealth, in partnership with other state and federal agencies, local communities and interested citizens. This mission is integral to making communities more livable and has a far-ranging impact on issues as diverse as economic development, jobs creation, affordable housing, tourism, community revitalization, environmental conservation and quality of life. www.heritage.ky.gov

[program name] is a(n) [Accredited, Designated or Network] Kentucky Main Street Program (KYMS) community. KYMS is the oldest statewide Main Street network in the nation, administered by the Kentucky Heritage Council / State Historic Preservation Office under the direction of the National Main Street Center. The goal of [program name]  is to facilitate downtown revitalization, public-private partnerships and economic development within the context of historic preservation. Through KYMS, more than $4.5 billion has been invested in Kentucky communities since 1979.

The Main Street approach has been right from the start. Main Street might be a work in progress, but it’ s also a work for progress. Main Street works. And you’ re the ones making it work.
– Donovan Rypkema

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