Monday, February 14, 2011

BID 'Census' Provides Insight into Standard Practices

The International Downtown Association (IDA) just released the U.S. BID Census. Commercial district management entities can use this information to compare their activities with their counterparts around the nation.

A few additional notable findings as they relate to typical BID budgets and programmatic priorities include:

  • Cleanliness and maintenance are a priority for most BIDs. According to the survey, three out of four BIDs provide litter and graffiti removal and more than half do rubbish collection and/or sidewalk washing, usually through contract.
  • Marketing and promotional activities are priorities for most BIDs. Common marketing programs are: advertising campaigns (86%); maps and area information (80%); holiday decorations (76%) and festivals (71%).
  • Security programs exist, but are not common BID activities. Relatively few BIDs have any form of security-related program. Of those that do, 25% provide uniformed "ambassadors". However, 81 BIDs (40%) also offer "ambassadors" as a marketing and hospitality service.
  • When BID's get into the business of retail leasing, they do so through marketing. Business recruitment and retention is done primarily through marketing (82%). Other related programs are: market research (62%); active recruiting (57%); and performance reporting (50%). About 30% of BIDs offer financial incentives to new or expanding businesses.
  • Funding capital improvements through debt service is uncommon. Only ten (10%) percent of BIDs reported funding debt service to pay for capital improvements.
The survey findings are available for purchase, but a short synopsis is available for free by clicking here.

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