Rural trends for 2017, rural travel healing the world, and more 

You’re important to me because you read these ideas, and you make your community better. That’s why I pack so much value into what I write for you each week. But this isn’t the only place I share my ideas, so I wanted to make sure you don’t miss out on any of the good stuff. These are some of my recent items shared on other sites and other places. 

Don’t feel like you should read all of these. Pick just one to click through and read right now. 

Top Small Town and Rural Small Business Trends For 2017 
This builds on the 3 rural megatrends we talked about last week and adds practical steps rural businesses can take to capitalize on them. It’s at, started by my friend Rex Hammock, a great resource for your local businesses. 
Healing the country through travel and tourism:

A discussion on the importance of travel in creating broad-minded people led to this two-part article on how tourism professionals and everyday people can encourage more travel and bring us closer together as people. These are at Tourism Currents, which I helped in the founding of years ago. It is the resource for social media training for tourism and hospitality. 

How to Meet the Needs of Your Rural Attendees
You might want to pass this one along to the committee planning that next big conference. You know the one I mean: the one that never remembers to include rural topics even though it’s a state-wide or big regional event that’s supposed to serve all the people. Thanks to a connection from Sheila Scarborough, DMAI (Destination Marketing Association International) shared this story. 

6 actions businesses can take to help in downtown revitalization efforts
Deb Brown and I shared ideas for businesses who find themselves in a downtown that could use some love and support. My friend Paul Chaney was kind to feature us in this article at Small Biz Trends. 

Promoting entrepreneurship to keep your town vibrant (AUDIO)
I was one of three guest experts on this call organized by the Orton Family Foundation, with the focus on practical steps toward supporting rural entrepreneurship, filling gaps downtown, and revitalizing your town.

Why Small Towns are Buzzing About Rural Creative Placemaking
You keep hearing about placemaking, creative placemaking, and maybe even rural creative placemaking. What the heck does it mean? I explain the buzzwords and share practical resources in this guest piece for Orton Family Foundation. I’ve really enjoyed building a stronger connection with the folks at the Orton Foundation. They’re doing good work. 

Most of these came about because of connections. If you have a connection that you think would be right for spreading some of my practical rural ideas, I’d love to hear about it. Just hit reply and tell me. 
Keep shaping the future of your town, 

PS –  Our next live broadcast is just a couple of weeks away. Don’t miss out on Deb Brown and I talking about trends for this year and thinking ahead about the next 30 years