Business Retention Program
In 2018, 345 Santa Ana companies were surveyed in person or by phone with a business retention questionnaire. The questionnaire is designed to identify the needs and critical issues of businesses so strategies and solutions can be developed. The Santa Ana Chamber of Commerce, City of Santa Ana Economic Development Department, Rancho Santiago Community College District, Santa Ana College, Santa Ana Workforce Investment Board, and Santa Ana Unified School District are partners in this program.
GROW Economic Development Conference
The GROW (Geography, Resources, Opportunity & Workforce) Economic Development Conference is an event where the City of Santa Ana and business leaders give a formal presentation to developers, investors, real estate executives, business owners, and company leaders on the reasons to invest or locate their businesses in Santa Ana. In 2018, the 5th annual GROW Conference was held at the historic Yost Theater. Major themes included: current development projects in the City, workforce availability & education possibilities, and how retail concepts are changing. A resource fair was also included in the conference. Over 250 people attended the event.
Visitor and Tourism Initiatives
In 2018, funding was provided for several projects designed to attract people to do things, eat, and stay in Santa Ana.
- Taste of Events
Taste of events are an economic development tool for the food and beverage industry. Two of these events were funded in 2018, the fifth annual Taste of Santa Ana and Viva Los Tacos. The goal of these events was to create awareness of and attract customers to great food and beverage establishments in Santa Ana. The Taste of Santa Ana has grown every year and now is a major event for the City. Attendance for the 2018 event grew to over 1,800 people and featured 34 food establishments, 11 breweries, wineries and distilleries, and 2 live bands.
- UncoverSantaAna Website
In 2018, www.UncoverSantaAna.com went live. The site is a continually updated library of stories about the people, places and visitor possibilities that make Santa Ana the epicenter of the new creative urbanism in Orange County. It focuses on telling the good and positive stories of Santa Ana. The website includes an event calendar for businesses to post their upcoming community events.
- Social Media
In 2018, many social media blasts were done to create awareness of things to do and upcoming events in Santa Ana.
- Public Relations
In 2018, two-day Santa Ana familiarization visits for media and bloggers were conducted. These first hand, immersive experiences led to positive reviews and coverage for the City.
Community Image Events
In 2018, funding was provided for two community image events.
- Difference Makers
At this annual event, business people in various categories are recognized for their accomplishments in doing good for the community. This not only thanks those being honored but inspires others to get involved in the future. Also at the event, one deserving student from each of 13 Santa Ana high schools and one from Santa Ana College are awarded a scholarship.
- State of the City
At this annual event, Santa Ana’s Mayor recaps events and accomplishments during the previous year, discusses current issues, summarizes development going on in the City, and lays out plans and priorities for the future. This assures the community that progress is being made and issues are being handled and helps the community work with the City toward common goals.