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The Experience Economy is Set to Grow in 2018

Monday, March 26, 2018

The economy is growing and now is an excellent time to join the new experience economy. For any entrepreneur who has the next big-idea or an established business looking to grow, 2018 is the time to make key business decisions and implement strategies for growth. Polk County Economic Development Corporation(PCEDC) supports local area businesses and entrepreneurs in their endeavors by providing mentorship, connections with key financial resources, assistance with workforce development and relocation. We come alongside local businesses and make it easier to grow.

Creating an Experience-Based Business is a Top Trend for 2018

Polk County is uniquely positioned to benefit from this growing trend. As more people across the U.S. are seeking experiences that go beyond what they do on a normal basis, they have to look outside of their own neighborhood, city, or even state. They could be looking in Polk County.

The experience economy is growing

More people are looking for an experience. Instead of seeking out the same entertainment options, they are looking to experience something new and unique, and to create an emotional connection when possible. This presents unprecedented opportunities for Polk County with our natural and cultural assets.

There are also opportunities to establish tourism hubs in areas that are far from the ocean beaches, amusement parks or major cities.   One example of where this happened is the I-72 Opportunity Corridor in Southern Illinois. This area now has a thriving business in Harpole's Heartland Lodge, a lodge that is attracting over 20,000 visitors per year. There was nothing else in the area to attract tourists when this business was launched. It started with an idea, leveraging the natural landscape as an attraction.  Polk County has many examples of businesses leveraging its natural landscape and beauty, but recent trends suggest that more opportunities could be possible.  

Establishing real connections

One reason people are seeking experiences is that they long for real connections. Businesses are spending time, resources and money, finding ways to truly connect with their customers. By deepening relationships, companies are hoping to create loyal customers. This can happen in Polk County because our communities are designed on the premise of neighborliness and connections - both with each other and the natural landscape.

Live-streaming has gone mainstream

To attract tourists to Polk County, businesses in the experience industry can use live-streaming as a tool for showing what it is like to actually visit our area. In the world of social media, live-streaming is gaining in popularity as people prefer to be able to watch live videos when possible. Facebook Live continues to expand their audience, for example. Live-stream videos can be used to share brand information, tips and advice, or even to showcase an experience like taking an art class, wine tasting, or fishing. All that is needed is a smartphone and decent internet connection.

Are you interested in joining the experience economy?

Now is the right time to start and grow a business. To find out how Polk County EDC can assist you, call contact us at


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