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Moreno Valley Deploys HQ2 Strike Team to Amazon Headquarters

Photo of man with newspaperOn Wednesday, October 18th Moreno Valley deployed its “HQ2 Strike Team” for a surprise operation at Amazon Corporate Headquarters in Seattle, Washington. Their primary mission: Ensure that Amazon staff take special notice of Moreno Valley’s enticing bid bring the company’s new Corporate Headquarters to our community.

The HQ2 Strike Team delivered a “special edition” of the Washington Post newspaper with exciting news: “Moreno Valley, CA wins Amazon HQ2 project in epic battle of cities.” The Strike Team carefully acquired, then captured its target audience. Amazon staff members did a double-take; they had just seen a newspaper - - published by Amazon CEO and Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos - - seemingly from the future. This one-of-a-kind approach newspaper generated exciting conversations between Amazon staff and City reps. But the Strike Team had another objective. This band of economic development warriors were in Seattle to gather important Intel regarding Amazon culture and what the company’s employees are looking for in a new home. Amazon employees did not share any confidential information, but they did appreciate the creative approach and delighted in the opportunity to discuss why Amazon is such a great employer.

“Without a doubt, Amazon knows how serious the City of Moreno Valley is about winning their business,” said Media Manger Tim Carroll. “As I stood there dressed in a Newsboy costume and shouting ‘Extra, Extra Amazon chooses Moreno Valley for HQ2’ -- I engaged Amazon employees as they arrived to the office for the start of their day. They were excited to hear more about what they saw in our newspaper.”

Moreno Valley’s tactical approach was winning over Amazon staff, by capturing their attention with a creative approach that led to exciting conversations about Amazon’s future in Moreno Valley.”

Word spread throughout Amazon’s Day 1 campus; Moreno Valley’s enthusiastic presence was inescapable. Moreno Valley’s HQ2 Strike Team’s mission is complete, and within only 48 hours of this unique visit, Amazon has already contacted the City.

Code-named “Operation MoValAmazon,” this week’s deployment was just part of Moreno Valley’s multi-media proposal to Amazon. Now that Moreno Valley is officially a contender for Amazon’s second headquarters, the City is ready to publicly unveil its unique approach to this proposal. Most cities were expected to submit the typical line of marketing material. But Moreno Valley is not “most cities,” not by a longshot. Our multi-departmental Team prepared the full-featured faux Washington Post newspaper, an Amazon to MoVal website, an Amazon Alexa Skill, and series of dynamic videos highlighting how Amazon will thrive by locating its new headquarters in Moreno Valley.

Building our proposal upon The Washington Post reflected the newspaper’s corporate tie to Amazon, allowing us to present information in each “section” of the newspaper.

For example:

  • What’s it like to live in SoCal? Check out the Lifestyle section, of course.
  • Where’s the perfect site in Moreno Valley for the new Amazon campus? It’s all right there…in the Real Estate section. At your fingertips is an ideal site location within a state-of-the-art development concept.

Amazon is a tech company, so the City’s Media team created a custom Alexa Skill for the Amazon Echo device (Echo, Echo Dot, Echo Show). Echo users can simply say “Alexa, launch Moreno Valley” and sit back while Alexa guides you on a journey through Moreno Valley. The Moreno Valley Skill is optimized for the Amazon Echo Show, which means Alexa will share Moreno Valley videos and photographs during the experience. Amazon Echo show was released only four months ago and Moreno Valley is one of the pioneers in developing an Echo Show Skill available in the Alexa marketplace. This breakthrough achievement illustrates Moreno Valley’s forward thinking nature and the City’s commitment to Amazon. The Moreno Valley Alexa Skill is available in the Alexa Skills Store and a video explaining the skills is available on the City’s YouTube Channel.

Moreno Valley’s HQ2 Strike team also produced a series of videos featuring local business testimonials. Amazon will hear, first hand, about Moreno Valley’s thriving economic development climate, and how the City truly “moves at the speed of business.” The HQ2 Strike Team also presented a video highlighting the proposed project site. These videos are available on the City’s YouTube Channel.

“Moreno Valley is the perfect fit for Amazon’s new headquarters,” said Mayor Yxstian Gutierrez. “As they view the exciting multi-media package assembled by our HQ2 Strike Team, Amazon will quickly realize how much our community has to offer. We’ve impressed them before, having already attracted two Amazon facilities to our great City. We’re committed to doing all we can to bring Amazon to Moreno Valley, where they can grow alongside our dynamic community.”

Amazon will announce announce its final site selection in 2018. For more information about the Amazon HQ2 project visit and to see photos from this special marketing effort visit the City's Facebook Page.

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