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Hickory launches interactive, virtual website – New economic development tool for Hickory

HICKORY, NC (April 2, 2019) — The City of Hickory is excited to launch, a new economic development online tool to market Hickory and the Hickory-Lenoir-Morganton MSA (metropolitan statistical area).

In 2018, City Manager Warren Wood rolled out the City’s strategic economic development plan which included the goals to attract businesses, create jobs, and increase population.  The City’s Office of Business Development unveiled the Hickory Trail goals in 2018 and now, which is another tool in the City’s economic development marketing toolbox.

“The purpose of is to showcase Hickory’s convenient location, incredible destinations, business opportunities, capable workforce, and vibrant quality of life,” said Assistant City Manager Rick Beasley, who oversees the City’s Office of Business Development.  “ will be an invaluable tool available for City staff, the Catawba County Economic Development Corporation (EDC), local organizations, and the community at large to utilize in talent recruitment and marketing for the Greater Hickory Metro.”

“The EDC continuously tries to position the Hickory market as a strong, stand-alone economy perfectly situated between Charlotte, Winston-Salem, Asheville, Greenville, and the mountains of N.C., allowing the strength of all of these to augment ours.  The website beautifully illustrates this much better than our comments ever could—think a web picture is worth a 1,000 (or many more) words,” said Scott Millar, president of the EDC. is an interactive, virtual tour of a sampling of Hickory’s locations, industries, and destinations, as well as ones that are within the Hickory MSA.  It features 360 degree videos, photos, and links, and is able to show that Hickory is within one hour to major markets with a map and a few clicks.

The online tour offers an instructional video that a first-time user can use to become familiar with the site.  Once inside the site, users can experience so much of what Hickory has to offer. 

Hickory is only the second municipality in the country to utilize this technology.  City staff worked with Wade Works Creative and invested $53,001 to create the innovative site. 

The City’s Office of Communications has implemented a multi-pronged marketing campaign to share this innovative new website with targeted regional markets to attract businesses, population, and visitors.  In April, the City began targeted campaigns on Spectrum Reach utilizing pre-roll digital advertising and cable TV commercials to reach entrepreneurs, business professionals, and decision makers in the Charlotte market.  Strategic email and digital marketing through Berkshire Hathaway Media in Concord and Mooresville, and City social media campaigns will also be implemented in specified target markets throughout the region.  The City has allocated $5,500 towards these marketing campaigns to share Hickory’s story and abundant opportunities for economic development and growth.

“We are excited to launch the website.  The ability to showcase Hickory for business development through this online platform is unique and we are proud to be able to be one of the first to launch this type of interactive tool,” stated Communications and Marketing Manager Dana Kaminske.  “ allows us to capture just some of the amazing destinations and industries that make up the Hickory MSA to use for marketing to larger markets to attract businesses and talent to Hickory in a way we haven’t been able to before.  And, our partners and local businesses can use this tool for their own recruitment needs.  When you see it all put together like this, who wouldn’t want to be in Hickory?”

To experience the interactive, virtual tour, please visit  For more information about business opportunities in the City of Hickory, please contact the Office of Business Development at (828) 323-7414.