Lorain Avenue businesses invited to join successful website

(Plain Press, February 2005) 2004 marks the third year of this successful e-marketing campaign, www.discoverlorainave.com to promote local, regional and international visitors to the unique retail, services, antique shops, international imports, historic sites and entertainment venues offered along the eight miles of Lorain Avenue between Kamms Corners and the West Side Market.

The website generated 172,487 visits in 2004 which is an increase over 2003. 10% of the visitors are from foreign countries.

The project followed the 1998 "Right in the Neighborhood" campaign developed by Rose Zitiello of the City of Cleveland, Department of Community Development, as the first marketing campaign in partnership between the City of Cleveland and the Convention and Visitors Bureau to promote visitors through the ethnic restaurants and international diversity found in Cleveland's retail neighborhoods.

In 2000, the earlier project was integrated into the paid advertising mega site, www.cleveland.com. In order to continue to offer free marketing to the small mostly independent business owners along Lorain Avenue, public and private donations support the project.

In 2004 project co chair Anita Brindza, Director of Cudell Improvement, coordinated RTA advertising buswraps with the Discover Lorain Avenue logo and website, which continue to generate an increase in traffic to the site.

The 2004 Web Traffic Report States that the top sources of visitors to the site are from the following domain sites: 38.83 % from .com; 37.57 %  from  .net; 2.7 %   from edu.; and 10 %  international visitors from over 40 countries

Peak months for traffic over the past 3 years are March through June 2004; The most used search words by visitors are “Lorain” & “Cleveland”.

Any business or service located on Lorain Avenue between Kamms Corners and the West Side Market & one quarter mile north or south of Lorain Avenue is eligible to have their business listed free of charge on the site.  

The following organizations are committee members of the project and assist in marketing the site to businesses on Lorain Avenue: Cudell Improvement,  Bellaire Puritas Development Corporation, Westown Community Development Corporation, Kamms Corners Community Development Corporation, Access-Ohio and Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization.

There are now over 165 businesses advertising their services and products for sale. Goals for 2005 include adding more business categories, e.g. the auto dealerships & related automotive services located in the Kamms Corners neighborhood; a special section for the West Side Market vendors and a new link for Historic Sites along Lorain Avenue.

Cleveland City Council members Mike Dolan, Marty Sweeney, Dona Brady, Jay Westbrook, Matt Zone, Nelson Cintron and Joe Cimperman have generously provided funding for the project. Corporate sponsors include Fifth Third Bank, First Star Bank and National City Bank.

If you would like to add your business or service to the site for this free advertising opportunity please contact Rose A. Zitiello, Department of Community Development at 216-664-4038 or at rzitiello@city.cleveland.oh.us.


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