Regional airport’s website designed to aid in marketing

Regional airport’s website designed to aid in marketing
By KEVIN BOWDEN
Special to The Press
A powerful marketing tool was unveiled last week by Everett-Stewart Regional Airport — a new website.
The website was designed and built by University of Tennessee at Martin senior communications-media design major Sarah-Katherine Roberts. She worked under the supervision of Dr. Tracy Rutledge, assistant professor of communications at UTM.
The website address is www.estewartregionalairport.com.
Logging on to the website opens the doors to an interesting array of information. A blue, white and gray color scheme is used throughout the website and each page features a professional airport logo.
The website is broken down into five sections — airport news, pilot resources, airport quick facts, community information and organizations.
“As a result of our strategic marketing plan for Everett-Stewart Regional Airport we have begun to create a new identity,” airport manager Jo Ann Speer said. “About a year ago, with the with the assistance of TVA, a logo and a new entrance and sign design concept was created. Although the new entrance and sign are still a concept, with the completion of the new access road we have great hopes to take our design to construction.”
Mrs. Speer went on to say airport officials saw a need for an updated website to match the airport’s new look.
“We wanted a more professional, sleeker and cleaner website,” she said. “We also wanted a website that will help promote the two counties as well as encourage economic development. I contacted the chancellor’s office at UT Martin and asked about the possibility of partnering with them on this project. “I was put in touch with Dr. Tracy Rutledge, assistant professor of communication at UT Martin and the new website design began.
“I would like to thank Chancellor Rakes, Dr. Robert Nanney, chair of the communications department and Dr. Rutledge for UT’s partnership with Everett-Stewart Regional Airport in our website design. UT Martin plays such an important role in this area and we are so very fortunate to be able to rely on their commitment to better our community.”
Pilots will find the airport website extremely useful. There is local weather information featured on the website as well as aviation information, runway length and a distance calculator.
The general public will be able to access the airport’s website for updated airport news and events. The site also features community information about Obion and Weakley counties.
The new website was designed to match the airport’s new branding efforts.
“Tracy has done an outstanding job in the design of the website and she has been fantastic to work with. The new website is everything I hoped for and more,” Mrs. Speer said.
The award-winning local airport continues to undergo a major transformation with millions of dollars spent on upgrading the local airport in recent years.
Since December 2006, 20 projects at Everett-Stewart Regional Airport represent more than $9.6 million in federal, state and local funding. About 88 percent of the money invested at the local airport comes from state and federal grants.
Also included as part of the airport’s new website is a brief history dating back to World War II. The local airport began as a training facility for military pilots and there is an interesting slide show of black and white images dating back to 1942.
“Everett-Stewart Regional Airport plays an important role in this community,” Dr. Rutledge said. “Working with Everett-Stewart Regional Airport to develop the new website was a wonderful opportunity. The project allowed UT Martin and the department of communications to support a local business and provided a rich learning experience for communication majors. The redesign project provided a senior media design student in the department of communication with an opportunity to apply knowledge from the classroom to a project for a real client. That experience is invaluable when it comes to job preparation.”
“We are proud to partner with the Everett-Stewart Regional Airport as we believe this transportation access will become more and more vital to the economic and cultural development of our region over the next few years,” Rakes said.
“I’m pleased that the partnership between ESRA and UT Martin is working out so wonderfully. Dr. Tracy Rutledge is an excellent professor who not only has fresh, pertinent skills, but also a willingness to make a difference out in the community. That’s one of our prime missions as a department and a university,” Dr. Nanney said
Kevin Bowden is a staff reporter with The Messenger in Union City. He may be contacted by email at kmbowden@ucmessenger.com. Published in The WCP 10.9.12

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