BSC’s Messaging Matrix – the place marketing tool for economic development

I’ve worked all over the world. Talking. Economic development. It’s not surprising when I get asked “how can you speak with such authority about all the places you’ve worked?”

Simple. The BSC Messaging Matrix.  A powerful communication tool custom designed for each and every community, city and country where I work.  I know what to speak about because I helped create place marketing material and communications that were meaningful and relevant.

The Messaging Matrix quite simply aligns each of your city’s key values with the audience you want to connect with, providing staff with a custom made concise set of phrases that get to the heart of what your “place” is all about.  It is a simple tool that amplifies your place branding and place marketing efforts by clarifying your city’s value.

Gone are the days when we watched our audiences’ eyes glaze over while we espoused corporate vision and mission statements.  They didn’t apply to our audience. Effective municipal communications relate that citizens, stakeholders and constituents are people who speak with human voices.  The Message Matrix engages a genuine conversation and ensures “key messages” stay relevant.

Ask yourself:

What are the 5 top attributes of our city (e.g., cultural heritage, industrial strengths)?


Who are the three key audiences we are trying to reach (e.g., local residents, specific industry leaders, destination tourists).

Now, consider how could you talk to each audience about these attributes in a way that will make sense to them? How do you make it relevant to your audience? What language are you going to use to communicate and connect? How are you going to keep your messaging consistent with staff?

Content for your Messaging Matrix will emerge from your place-branding research (see Place Branding – Marketing Intensive Training).

In this short video clip I’ll show you how to fill out your Messaging Matrix.  This video is from my Place Branding – Marketing Intensive workshop recently held with municipal leaders from across Canada, Ukraine, and Vietnam.

BSC Video-Messaging Matrix from Build Strong Cities on Vimeo.

To help you get started crafting a Messaging Matrix for your community, I’ve created the Messaging Matrix Worksheet.


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