Our Survey of Rural Challenges ranked this #1

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"Our downtown is dead" was the #1 top answer on our Survey of Rural Challenges, twice. 

We know it’s a common issue. To make matters even worse, the lack of usable buildings was also in the top 10 issues on the Survey of Rural Challenges, twice. So not only is the downtown dead, you have buildings you can’t even use.

In this webinar, Becky and Deb will share suggestions, stories and ideas they know have worked in small towns on how to bring your downtown back to life. Join in the conversation about empty buildings and how to get them ready for the future. Learn about creating a pipeline for new businesses. You’ll hear how you can make downtown livelier right now. You’ll get the opportunity to follow up more in depth.

BONUS - Start more small businesses

We don't do this very often, but we're including a bonus. When you register, you'll get a copy of our ebook, 101 Ways to Start More Small Businesses in Your Small Town, because that's going to be a key to reviving your downtown. 

Recorded lesson available Wednesday March 21, 2018, noon CDT (Central Time)  

Live discussion Wednesday March 28, 2018, 2pm CDT (Central Time) 

(not our usual noon, but 2pm CDT)


Both the recorded lesson and the recording of the discussion will be available through April 11, giving you 2 weeks to watch the replay.

How it works

You'll get a recorded lesson that lasts about 30 minutes to watch anytime starting Wednesday March 21 at noon Central Time, and you can join us for an hour of live discussion and Q&A session Wednesday March 28 at 2 pm Central Time. That way you have time to watch the lesson, think of questions, and share with others in your town. Then join us and your rural peers for a full hour of live discussion and your questions. Sound interesting? Join us and let us know how it works for you.

Why not have a watch party? Invite your crowd to view the recorded lesson, and learn some small steps you can use right away. 


What are your webinars like? Will there be slides?   

This is a two-part webinar. You get a recorded lesson you can watch anytime. You see our faces, and we connect with you personally even though it's recorded. We give you a downloadable handout instead of boring slides, and we focus on real-world examples, not statistics. Plus you have the option to join us for a live discussion session with Q&A. 

Will it be recorded? 

Yes, and the replay will be available for 14 days from the debut. After that, the recording goes away, so be sure to schedule a specific time to watch!

Will it work with my system? 

For the recorded lesson, if you can watch a YouTube video, you can view the recording. That means you can use any device, any screen that can load a web page and play a YouTube video. PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone, Android, and smart TVs should all work. You can test your setup by playing the video on this page. If that works, you should be good to go. 

For the live session only, we use Zoom. You can join from most any PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone or Android device. You don't need a Zoom account, and there is no charge from Zoom for listening in. You can test your setup first with Zoom here.  

How long will it run? How long do I need to schedule for a replay?

The recorded lesson runs 30 minutes. The discussion and Q&A session runs about an hour. We also take questions by email.

You can bring friends:

Once you’re registered, you can schedule more than one viewing during the replay window so you reach as many people as possible.

We allow you to watch alone, invite friends and hold multiple replays in your town, as long as you’re personally present each time. If others want to watch without you, we ask that they also register. 

Who should you invite?

  • Downtown business owners and managers
  • Downtown associations, Main Streets, Chambers
  • Economic development folks
  • Elected officials, cities, towns, municipalities
  • Those who want to revitalize their downtowns
  • Visionaries like yourself

Watch the lesson anytime from Mar 21-Apr 11

Join the live Q&A session Mar 28 or watch the recording

Watch as many times as you like, start and stop, no limit

Includes subscriptions to A Positive View of Rural and Building Possibility enewsletters

Already a member? Login, then head to the replay page to view the details

  • We had a fabulous inaugural “EDC after hours” on Wednesday night this week! We did the replay of the Bringing Big Ideas to Life – it was a perfect launching point for discussion! We had 25 of our members in attendance, and secured three new members as a result!
    Julie Barr, Schoolcraft County, U.P., Michigan
  • There are always great take-aways from the webinars that can be put into place immediately. One of my favorites is changing your store's evening vibe (different music, lighting, etc.) because evening shoppers are not the same as day time shoppers.
    Diane Moore, Wheaton, Illinois
  • I have so many ideas, but didn't really have the motivating vehicle to get the stakeholders together to present them. Your webinar is the perfect vehicle to generate the enthusiasm and wherewithal to needed to start the ball rolling. While viewing the seminar, my enthusiasm to see things happen in Cleveland was regenerated, and it hasn't waned. I can't wait to start that journey. Keeping in mind, there are so many areas to address, I joined and am now a member of the Insiders so I can view all of the webinars.
    Mary Johnson, Cleveland, Oklahoma, Chamber of Commerce
  • I ran the "Top Ten Trends for Small Towns in 2017" seminar from my Megaphone subscription about three months ago. Two ladies who were there jumped on the Painted Rocks idea and set up a FB page for our town of 900. They invited everyone to target "What Canada Means to You" images to start the ball rolling and aimed for everyone to hide their rocks a day or two before Canada Day, July 1st. It went over great. Today 337 members and going strong. Now moving on with more seminars. Great reception for "Gather Your Crowd," with more ideas bubbling up.
    Paul Douglas Stevens, Ontario
  • What a TERRIFIC marketing Webinar. I had 20 businesses show up to watch and they all left with new ideas and an excitement to get back and start implementing! I’ve already had 5 businesses reach out in less than 2 hours after it ended, that are already putting your ideas into action.
    Mandy Walsh, City of Lampasas, Texas
  • Your webinars are just so precious. I wish I could fill an auditorium with our local chamber of commerce leaders and boards to hear you both.
    Jim Blankenship, Tennessee
  • This webinar stimulated lots of note-taking and conversation between the business owners gathered at my house. Deb and Becky gave us some new ideas and several excellent examples of known models. I think some of us are thinking of pivoting our summer’s plans after participating in Wednesday’s event. Thanks for a well-thought out presentation!
    Jonya, Oronoco, Minnesota, RochesterFiber.com
  • I watched the webinar video last night. It was great. I think you and Deb make good team. Nice banter, good pacing, and lots of useful information. Excellent!
    Cindy Kelly, Kansas
  • I appreciated the very relaxed feel to the webinar. No monotone drone that gets tuned out off and on throughout a session... I watched it twice as matter of fact.
    James Leonard, Town of Buffalo, Oklahoma
  • The great thing is that the principles you discuss are as applicable here in rural Australia as they are in the USA!
    David Scott, Destination Dorrigo, Australia



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