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the challenge

As economic development hit western Des Moines, investors largely ignored the City of Altoona, just to the east. They perceived it as “a small, sleepy town,” failing to see the potential just beneath the surface.

big idea

big idea

MACLYN crafted an urgent, anthemic call-to-action – Altoona is Happening Now – that gave the city newfound swagger, awoke the development community, and sparked a revolution.


real results

Since brand launch, the city has become Iowa’s Rising Star. With 350 new jobs and $358 million invested in the community, Altoona is Happening Now.

Research & Discovery:

Understanding Altoona’s Challenges & Opportunities

Through qualitative & quantitative research, MACLYN identified Altoona’s target market, created a detailed SWOT analysis, and gained insights from Google Analytics and other data sources. We sat down with key members of the Altoona community, as well as outsiders, to fully understand the city’s perception and reality.


Creative Brand Development:

Crafting an Anthem

MACLYN crafted a distinct mark, voice and visual style for the AltoonaNow brand, pairing dramatic imagery of a rising star with a striking anthem. The new brand, full of unexpected swagger, generated awareness and consideration for Altoona among site selectors and other members of the economic-development community. Now, they’re investing heavily in the city’s future.




invested in commercial
& residential

Omnichannel Brand Presence:

Bringing AltoonaNow to the World

We implemented the new AltoonaNow brand across all digital channels, from Google ads and social platforms to virtual property tours and targeted email campaigns. This shifted public perception of Altoona and spread awareness to key target markets.

Social Platform Management:

Building the #AltoonaNow Movement

We engage AltoonaNow’s target markets across social platforms via curated imagery, breaking news, and dynamic content. Thousands have joined the movement.

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Targeted Digital Advertising:

Reaching Key Decision-Makers

AltoonaNow’s digital ads target potential investors, developers and business owners, driving them to, where we collect their information and generate new leads.

Website Development:

Creating a Digital Stronghold

MACLYN developed a UX/UI-friendly website that drives investment, offers virtual property tours, and connects business pioneers with opportunities in Altoona.

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Immersive Brand-Launch Experience:

Introducing Iowa’s Rising Star

MACLYN brought together civic leaders, business dignitaries and other community influencers for an immersive brand-launch experience, where we unveiled the AltoonaNow brand, calling-on the audience to join the movement.

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Content Curation:

Leading the Altoona Conversation

MACLYN creates & manages AltoonaNow’s digital content. In addition to news and available-property features, we craft blogs and feature stories related to trending topics of the economic development community. By focusing on topical issues, we increase brand-engagement and spread awareness of Altoona.


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development since
campaign launch

Strategic Search Optimization:

Leading the Google Frontier

Using strategic keywords, we optimize relevant search-results for AltoonaNow, targeting users who are searching for economic development opportunities in the Iowa region.