By Lonnie Huhman,

The community members behind the push to update the ChelseaMich brand sat down recently with Pure Michigan to talk digital marketing.

A presentation was given on Aug. 2, inside city council chambers by Ken Yarsevich, an advertising specialist for the Michigan Economic Development Corporation/Pure Michigan.

Ken Yarsevich, an advertising specialist for the Michigan Economic Development Corporation/Pure Michigan, gave a presentation to the ChelseaMich team on Aug. 2.

From this came some questions that community members will need to answer as they discuss joining the program, which has a cost of $50,000 per year with a matching payment by the Pure Michigan campaign. With all of the partners involved and matching payments, the overall campaign has a current annual standing at $2.7 million.

Monica Monsma, the executive director of the Chelsea Area Chamber of Commerce, said the presentation was given to be a way for Chelsea to explore another marketing tool, in this case a partnership with the Pure Michigan digital marketing campaign.

In looking at the overall community marketing effort, Monsma said the Chamber is working with community leaders, downtown businesses and D&B Strategic Marketing on different initiatives to revitalize the ChelseaMich brand and increase shopping in the community.

According to the website, it was, “created as the result of community leaders and concerned citizens coming together create a comprehensive marketing initiative to promote the city of Chelsea. A committee was formed in 2010, consisting of dedicated individuals representing the major economic sectors of Chelsea. The committee was informally given the working title of “Chelsea First” with the understanding that initiatives which help Chelsea as a whole, will by default benefit business owners, residential growth and the overall economic health and wellness of our city.” is a program of the Chelsea Area Chamber of Commerce and is made possible through support from local businesses and organizations through sponsorships and advertising.
Other parts of the community branding initiative have the Chelsea team working on updating its web pages and online links to make it more digitally friendly, and one other specific local initiative has Monsma and the chamber working with the Potawatomi Mountain Biking Association to see if Chelsea can be designated as a trail town because of its great local path options.

From the Pure Michigan presentation came some questions:

How does Chelsea want to market or define itself? If someone asked you about Chelsea, how would you describe it and what recommendations would you give for what community destinations a person or group should visit?

The Pure Michigan program being explored is the “Always-On, Year-Round Digital Partnership.”

Its media strategy is to create an always-on presence and target the in-market audience; to leverage efficient paid media that optimizes to top performing placements and creative, and to facilitate greater conversions on partner landing page.

So in other words, the program, if joined, would have Chelsea as one of its featured destinations on its website and through different webpage filters a potential visitor would reach Chelsea’s information/highlights and then possibly decide to make it a place to visit. The filters would be one place where Chelsea would need to define itself.

There are 12 filters and a few of them are: Small Towns, Handcrafted, Camping, Outdoor Recreation and Family Fun.

Two consumer targets of the program are “Adventure Scouts” and “Sentimental Traveler.”

The first is defined as having a median age of 39, who is vacation hungry and in continual pursuit of the next adventure, and would use social media to highlight their trip. The second has a median age of 49 and prefers domestic family vacations within driving range that are relaxing, and they may be repeat visitors to a destination.

In closing his presentation, Yarsevich said Chelsea has a lot of big attractions, great shops and places to visit that make it a great example of what Michigan has to offer to visitors and tourists.

“We have a lot to think about,” Monsma said after the Pure Michigan presentation.

Over the coming months the ChelseaMich team will discuss the Pure Michigan program and would most likely make a decision on it before the new year, as that is when the new campaign round would begin.