The creative economy

The creative sector of Colorado’s economy is the 900-pound gorilla that few have really noticed until now. According to a new study by the Colorado Council of the Arts, this sector is the fifth-largest of the Colorado economy, directly employing more than 122,000 people – plus another 75,000 supporting these creative enterprises.

The true story of the impact of the creative economy is not just shown in the direct employment figures, however. There is a multiplier effect, where each creative enterprise job contributes to additional jobs and revenues for other firms-like yours. If you own a restaurant or other business near an arts district, you are directly benefiting from the traffic generated by the creative sector. For some Colorado towns, like Creede, the arts community is vital for the area’s survival.

As much as the creative sector attracts customers’ dollars, it also helps our communities draw both individuals and businesses wanting to relocate. Our creative economy makes Colorado one of the most desirable places to live in our nation, buoying both commercial and residential real estate values in the process.

This is the first installment in my new column about ideas and techniques to help creative enterprises become more successful in today’s demanding business environment. For the creative organization, it is just as important to hone business skills as it is to improve their particular craft.

This column is not just for enterprises that produce creative products or services, though. In a sense, all businesses are creative at some level, whether you are creating art, operating a restaurant or building a house. There are business and marketing ideas and techniques, some old, some new, that you need in order to be successful; that is what this column hopes to provide.

Some of the trends and tools to be explored in future columns include:

• Business planning for the creative enterprise

• Collaboration – the new form of business organization

• How to build a world-class brand and get noticed in a world full of noise

• Social Media – everyone is doing it; few are doing it right

• The “New” Marketing – is it really new?

• Financing the creative enterprise

• How to create ideas for your organization and make it a way of life

• Customer service – the “secret weapon”

I look forward to having you as a regular reader, and if you have some comments or ideas please drop me a line.

Next time: What really makes up Colorado’s creative economy?

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Categories: Company Perspectives, Management & Leadership