County campaign to address population loss

Chautauqua County officials are working on addressing the problem of declining population in the region.

Mark Geise, county IDA director and deputy county executive for economic development, told members of the IDA that the county will be unveiling a new branding program in April called “Choose CHQ” and “Live CHQ.” Choose CHQ is more for businesses, while Live CHQ is more for people to relocate to the county.

Beginning around April 1, the Live CHQ will begin social media and billboard ads. On April 16 will be a kickoff celebration at the Robert H. Jackson Center and on April 18 will be a kickoff celebration at the 1891 Fredonia Opera House. Afterward, Geise said they will be doing radio and print ads, podcasts and video. “We have a whole strategy on how we’re going to roll this out, how we’re going to really push it out, and get the most bang for our buck,” he said.

Since early 2023, the county IDA and the Chautauqua County Partnership for Economic Growth have partnered with Block Club – a branding, strategy and content agency based in Buffalo – on developing a multi-year talent attraction and retention marketing campaign.

The campaign, according to the IDA’s annual report, is designed to work both regionally and nationally to illustrate “what a great place Chautauqua County is to conduct business, raise a family, and visit – with an emphasis on outdoor recreation and strong quality of life indicators.”

There will also be aspects of the campaign to focus on Chautauqua County’s economy, including business development.

Both campaigns will include the launch of a Live CHQ website and a Choose CHQ website, which will replace the existing county IDA website.

Funding for this marketing effort is being provided through Chautauqua County’s American Rescue Plan Act funds, the Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Foundation, and county IDA funding.


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