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Colorado’s New Online Identity Puts Staid Government Websites to Shame

Overview: When the State of Colorado began the process of updating its current website, chief marketing officer Liz Cahill was laser-focused on making sure the new website showcased the extra-ordinary assets that Colorado offers using compelling visuals and strong narratives.

“In a survey of business executives both in and out of state, we learned that more than half had positive feelings associated with the state including confidence in the business climate, emboldened by a smart workforce, and inspired by our location,” Cahill said. “Our issue was that our website didn’t communicate any of these optimistic outlooks.”

With this challenge in mind, Cahill and her team contracted with DCI to ensure that the site continues to serve as not only as a resource hub for relevant audiences, but also as a source of inspiration.

The site follows all best practices we recommend: it’s built on an open-source CMS, it allows for integration of Salesforce for lead generation purposes, it uses mobile-first navigation and it challenges the conventional design found in the economic development industry.

Launch Date: August 2016

Five Things DCI Loves About It:

Office of Economic Development and International Trade Website Feature

The Imagery is Breathtaking and Moving:
The images on Colorado’s website move, literally. The website features videos as the main featured visual on the landing page and the 14 industries to really bring to life Colorado’s business environment. In addition, it was important to ensure that the videos wouldn’t slow down the load times, so each has been buffered for varied bandwidths and experiences.

Office of Economic Development and International Trade Website Feature

It’s Got Personality:
The new Colorado website certainly isn’t lacking in personality. Almost every single page has that casually sophisticated confidence that you find when doing business with Colorado executives and companies. Plus with geo-targeting capabilities, the website is also serving up a tailored message for its different audiences from the East Coast, West Coast, international and in-state.

Office of Economic Development and International Trade Website Stories Feature

Stories about Choosing Colorado
: In Colorado, a good campfire story goes a long way. For the state’s marketing team, ensuring that company executives had a platform to tell why they choose to do business in Colorado was requirement for the new site. The website launched with more than 10 case studies of executives from major companies, including Panasonic, High Noon, Lockheed Martin, Ball Aerospace and Surrey Satellite, talking about why they’ve chosen Colorado and what they love most about living in the state. The website is designed to continue to tell these stories, with a strong content marketing plan in place to feature at least two new companies each month.

Office of Economic Development and International Trade Website Data Feature

Numbers that Come to Life:
And I’m not talking about animated numbers that dance across the screen. Let’s face it; you can’t be in the business of economic development, without being in the business of numbers and statistics. Instead of just listing out the demographics in a chart that looks like it was copied from Excel, the website overlays comparative data on Colorado backdrops. The result is that users can easily digest key pieces of Colorado data while at the same time getting a sense for what it’s like to live and work there.

Office of Economic Development and International Trade Website Regions Feature

It Gives Love to Partners and Regions:
As a state organization, making sure local partners and regions feel the love is critical to success, but doing that in a visually appearing way is sometimes a challenge. The new website solves both issues with an interactive map found throughout the website.


What about inspires you? Let us know in a comment below or tweets us @aboutdci.

Written By

Susan Brake

Susan Brake is Vice President at DCI overseeing the digital media strategy for all the firm's economic development clients. Since joining the company, she has effectively leveraged traditional and social media tactics to reach target audiences for her clients large and small.

More Articles by Susan Brake

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