• Posted by: i2E

JustGOODNews.BIZ: A positive development for businesses, communities

OKLAHOMA CITY  — When Wonderful Group announced plans for a new tile factory and 220 jobs in Lebanon, Tennessee, the news didn’t escape the editors of JustGOODNews.BIZ.  Nor were the 6,500 jobs Northrup Grumman is bringing to Palmdale, California, or a $22 million R&D expansion and 350 jobs Galderma Labs is adding in Fort Worth, or the $10 million renovation at Oklahoma City’s Valir Hospital and 900 new jobs at Boeing.

In fact, the good news of job creation, business expansion and corporate innovation in local communities from every state are chronicled daily by Oklahoma-City based JustGOODNews.BIZ (JGN).

It’s about time. Recently the Pew Foundation reported that only one in 17 news stories today is considered positive.  And very few of those are business stories.

So the husband-and-wife team of Dick and Kris Rush decided to help businesses and communities share their good news with the audiences that matter most to them.

Last year, the couple launched America’s first and only positive economic news service. JustGOODNews.BIZ strips away the clutter so readers can easily find positive business leads, jobs and opportunities. “We cover who’s hiring, who’s expanding plus innovative companies and communities with great ideas,” said Kris Rush. “We deliver it state-by-state and sector-by-sector. Free of charge.”

Kris and Dick are career chamber and economic development executives who have a collective 70 years’ experience at the local, state, national and international levels. Dick was President of Oklahoma’s State Chamber for 24 years.

With Web development company PixelMongers, LLC, as a partner, the Rushes launched JustGOODNews.BIZ full-time in January 2015.

“We’re not only aggregating the most positive, encouraging news of the day, we are creating an archive of American achievement,” Kris said.

With 23,000 stories published so far, its national editor and team of freelance writers set out daily to find stories within their states.

Readers are influential entrepreneurs and CEOs and their teams, along with small business owners, job seekers, chamber and economic developers. They use JustGOODNews.BIZ to find business connections with successful companies, job leads, investment opportunities and site locations.

Almost every reader says they’re happy to find one site that covers just positive news for a change.

As the site grew, economic development organizations and chambers approached the JustGOODNews.BIZ team about having their own news site within JGN’s platform. In addition to a dedicated feed of the community’s success stories, the site would feature the community’s marketing logo, latest videos, economic profile, information on jobs, relocation information and available property.

So, JustGOODNews.BIZ’s Featured Community sites launched this summer for Oklahoma City, Enid and Ponca City. JGN generates revenues from news updates plus ads from local supporters who want their brand associated with good economic news there. Additional Texas and Florida communities are targeted to be the next on board. While JustGOODNews.BIZ hopes to always provide national, state and community news free to readers, Phase II revenue can be generated from selling positive business content to other news and data services – and subscription-based access to JGN’s sector news stories from manufacturing, technology, health care and biotechnology, finance, retail, and other sectors.

Growing traffic and a solid sales operation are critical steps for this startup. The company has worked with i2E Venture Advisor Claire Robison to focus its business plan and reach out to potential investors.

JGN can be a low-cost platform for communities to showcase their location assets to corporate site selectors anywhere in the country, Robison said.

“If you are a manufacturer in upstate Maine who wants to put another plant in the Midwest, unless you have prior knowledge of potential site locations, you probably won’t come up with Enid, OK on your own,” she said. “Using sector news on JGN, you can see where there are active manufacturing communities. If they are also a Featured Community, you can see the city’s marketing material and get a better sense of the city’s economic activity.”

Or, the JGN news feed could be a source of content fed directly to a community’s or chamber of commerce’s site. The JGN archive might even be a content source for a site selection venue such as StateBook International, Robison suggested.

Advice and perspective from i2E’s team of advisors has been valuable as Kris and Dick Rush traveled down the entrepreneur’s path.

“We’re so appreciative that i2E saw the vision of what we want to accomplish and for the expert advice and guidance from the first-class staff there with Claire Robison as our lead Venture Advisor and Kevin Moore providing additional guidance,” Kris said. “We came looking for support, validation and, potentially, financing. I really have to say it’s been an extraordinary experience.”

That’s all good news.

Image: Kris and Dick Rush

Source: i2E Winter 2016 Innovators & Entrepreneurs, p. 8

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i2E, Inc. is a nationally recognized private not-for-profit corporation focused on growing innovative small businesses in Oklahoma and making a positive impact on the state’s economy. Our thanks to President and CEO, Scott Meacham, for these GOOD news stories and for allo...