This weekend represents Twin Milestones. It was July 4th, 2010 at 12:15 am that this site went live after over a year of design, construction and driving my I/T guy nuts. I actually had to give permission to Mark Evans ( e-Vision Media ) to tell me “NO” when I was going too far off the edge with ideas. He has used this power on me a few times , so far.
We started out with about 40 companies listed , mainly because it was very hard to recruit companies to a website that didn’t exist. During this first year , I’ve spent hundreds of hours talking to vendors and recruiting them to join the site. ($500 Bill)
In March 2011, ABC News started featuring a Made in America Series that was only going to run for 2 weeks. The popularity was so overwhelming that they have continually revisited it, because as I have said , there is a wave slowly moving across the land to get back to supporting American business and buying local. Making some contacts with the right people, this website is listed FIRST on the ABC News’ reference list.
It’s very rewarding to watch something that was an idea come full circle to a viable website that can be a benefit for vendors and customers. My goal was to “Paint a face” on each company represented, to show people that these companies take the risks to stay in business and employ your neighbors. This is how the “American Jobs” came about. I wanted visitors to see how many people rely on feeding their families by the companies listed on the site along with the total number of companies listed. So we created the Marquee. (above)
The “Chalk Board” was added because I wanted the random visitor to the site to see how many companies were added since the last visit. Hopefully that curiosity to view the new companies and keeping it current would drive repeat traffic. The numbers on the board to the left represent almost 99% from ABC News coverage.
And now my favorite idea.
“Thoughts on America” . Vendors who register their company are asked this question. In the beginning , I thought we may get 6-10 of the same answers. I was pleasantly overwhelmed with the passion and intensity of some of the “Thoughts” that were posted. I felt that these should be a Home Page focal point, and has proved to be a favorite of site Visitors. The rotation has about 25-30 companies and then they will be replaced with another group so they stay fresh. Another feature is if you “click” on the theater comments, you will be taken to their website.
GETTIN’ AMERICA BACK IN BUSINESS