The Frederick County Office of Economic Development (OED) has increased marketing efforts recently with the launch of a brand new agricultural website called HomegrownFrederick.com and the redesign of the existing DiscoverFrederickMD.com, which aims to help businesses start, locate, expand and discover Frederick County.
HomegrownFrederick.com is an innovative website developed by OED that highlights Frederick County’s agriculture, agritourism and growing subsectors. It was officially launched at a Frederick Keys Game on June 16th, 2016 in partnership with the Tourism Council of Frederick County. Despite a rain-out of the actual game, staff officially unveiled it on the field with Maryland Farm Bureau President Chuck Fry giving the opening remarks and many farmers and economic development partners were in attendance. A reschedule date of August 24th, 2016 has been set for 7pm.
In 2014, OED partnered with Frederick Magazine to produce the Homegrown Frederick magazine. Because of the huge success of this publication, OED now makes this an annual publication and worked with Frederick Magazine to be able to develop the website which compliments the Homegrown Frederick magazine.
HomegrownFrederick.com includes information on Frederick County’s creameries, equine industry, Christmas tree farms, events like Family Festival at the Farm, a farmers market listing, a CSA directory, a directory of restaurants that support local farmers, agriculture events and a completely revamped Virtual Farmers Market mapping tool where users can search for locally grown products with mobile-friendly technology displayed on a map. 75 farms are included in the directory. Laura House, co-owner of Gaver Farm in Mt Airy said “The new site looks great! It is very user friendly and easy to navigate.”
A section on Frederick County’s rapidly growing Craft Beverages industry is displayed and users can search for wineries, breweries and distilleries. With the “farm-to-glass” movement on the rise nationally and locally, OED has used mapping technology for Frederick County’s craft beverages industry to help make visiting these locations easier.
Homegrown Frederick also has a social media presence on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, including things like #proudtobeHomegrownFrederick and a “Day in the Life of a Frederick County Farmer.”
In September 2015, OED surveyed Frederick County farmers for feedback on the old agricultural sections of the website. The survey also proposed an all-inclusive agriculture website and asked for thoughts and comments from the farmers. An overwhelming 82% of the responses received said that having an all-inclusive website for agricultural economic development opportunities would be very effective and 14% said it would be somewhat effective. 64% of the farmers said they predicted sales would increase by 11% to 100% by having an updated version of the website that would allow them to market their products and events. Frederick County Agriculture Business Council Chair and Frederick County Farmer Tom Mullineaux said, “This overhaul of agriculture marketing efforts demonstrates Frederick County’s commitment to this important industry.”
The Frederick County Office of Economic Development’s main website got a complete overhaul as well with facts and resources aimed to help businesses start, grown and locate their business to Frederick County. The website includes bright, beautiful photography that illustrates Frederick County’s high quality of life opportunities and a brand new video that aims to help people “Discover Frederick County.” The website also highlights testimonials and success stories of companies who are proud to be in Frederick County.
About the Frederick County Office of Economic Development (OED)
The mission of the Frederick County Office of Economic Development is to increase the overall economic health of Frederick County through attracting new businesses in our targeted industries and helping existing businesses become more successful. OED is the catalyst for economic growth in Frederick County.