How tweet it is.
Iowa jumped off to an early lead in a cable TV network’s unscientific Twitter survey of states that are great places to do business, thanks to a public sales pitch from Gov. Terry Branstad.
Branstad used his weekly news conference Monday to announce Iowa’s participation in CNBC’s “Top States Twitter Battle,” and to lobby Iowans on Twitter to use #TopStatesIA to assist in promoting Iowa’s stature as a great place to do business.
In addition to engaging on Twitter, CNBC offered each governor the opportunity to record an “elevator pitch” video and submit it as part of the campaign. The governor’s staff put together a brief video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SnmfO92glyo) of the governor explaining why Iowa is a top state for business. By noon Monday, CNBC’s web site indicated Iowa had the early lead in Twitter responses with 39 percent, followed by Wisconsin with 31 percent and Florida with 10 percent.
The Twitter battle is not part of the network’s “Top States for Doing Business” annual rankings, a high-profile yearly assessment of all 50 states on 43 measures of competitiveness developed with input from business groups including the National Association of Manufacturers and the Council on Competitiveness.
Iowa ranked No. 1 nationally in the cost of doing business category in 2009 and 2010 and has held the second place in that ranking for 2008 and 2011 – a year Iowa also ranked fifth for its economy. Iowa has not landed in the overall top five in rankings dating back to 2007.
Branstad noted that the Twitter battle was a purely subjective measure, but he hoped Iowa finished strong in the “Top States” rankings because a lot of business people watch the cable network.
“I am not completely satisfied with our business climate because property taxes remain too high in Iowa,” he said. “We have made progress on limiting burdensome regulations and creating our new Iowa Economic Development Authority, but our work on job creation and improving Iowa’s business rankings should continue to be a priority for all of us. Additionally, our efforts to improve our education system are vitally important in moving Iowa forward.”