In an effort to promote Perham as a great place to live and work, city councilors have agreed to invest in a new website.
The site will be designed to provide information about the community to potential newcomers, and will promote marketable aspects of Perham, such as the schools, lakes and available jobs.
The site is also intended to create an identifiable presence for Perham’s Economic Development Authority (EDA), both in and outside of the community. Its immediate primary focus will be on jobs, informing the public of career opportunities in town.
Eventually, according to City Manager Kelcey Klemm, the site will contain broader information, becoming a “one-stop shop” not only for potential employees or future residents, but also for developers seeking information on the EDA or on properties that are available in town.
At a meeting last week, city councilors unanimously voted to spend up to $15,000 on the site, and accepted a quote from Absolute Marketing, of Fargo, N.D., to design and create it.
Klemm said the website could be paid for using enterprise funds, such as the city’s gas fund.
“I’ve seen other cities use their enterprise funds for EDA-type activities,” he said, “and that’s what I’d consider this to be; an EDA-type activity.”
Councilor Fred Lehmkuhl said $15,000 sounded like “a lot of money,” but added that,
“if that’s what it takes to get it done, I’d rather get it done right.”
Councilor James Johnson agreed about the cost, but said the payback would be relatively easy: “All it takes is one or two families moving to the area (because of what they saw on the website), and you’ve got that money back.”
According to a preliminary site map detailed in the proposal from Absolute Marketing, the site will include two sections: Living Here and Doing Business Here.
Under Living Here, there will be more information about work, schools, organizations and churches. The ‘work’ section will include an RSS feed from Perham’s online job listings at jobshq.com.
The Doing Business Here section will include categories like Perham data, financing and available lots.
The site will include a mobile version along with features like a search field and onboard site map. Links to social media sites such as Facebook will be prominently displayed, and the Home and Contact options will be visible on each page.