Shelter Cove Towne Centre uses New Social Media Platform to Promote Community Engagement

Jul 08, 2013, 11:08 ET from Shelter Cove Towne Centre

HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C., July 8, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Shelter Cove Towne Centre has partnered with Popularise, a crowd-sourcing platform for the real estate development industry, to gather ideas for the center's available tenant space.

The goal of the partnership is to promote community engagement, according to Don Barnett of Kroger Real Estate. "This is an ideal platform for us to connect with the Island community.  We want to know which retailers, restaurants and services both residents and visitors would like to see in this exciting new development; so we decided to eliminate the guesswork and just ask," said Barnett.

Popularise users can follow project "drawing boards" and vote in favor of ideas, or suggest an idea of their own. Users can request their favorite retailers, restaurants and services, or suggest a general concept. Do you wish there was a Brazilian barbecue restaurant you could take your friends to? How about a blowout bar where you can get your hair styled before a night out on the town?

"If you want it, suggest it," says Popularise cofounder, Brandon Jenkins. "Popularise is like an online petition. You need to state your cause first, then get everyone you know to support it. If enough people are on board, your cause is hard to ignore."

Traditionally, community members must attend town meetings to have their opinions heard. These meetings might involve five to ten people, "Popularise can involve thousands," said Jenkins. 

The crowd-sourcing platform hopes to make private and public development more transparent. "Our customers want to know that their opinions are valued," said Roni Allbritton, general manager of the Shelter Cove Towne Centre. "And our prospective tenants want to know that there is a desire in the community for what they offer."

"We will be focusing on the most popular suggestions, but we are open to input of any kind," stated Allbritton. "We won't rule out ideas that might fit well in the center."

There's no guarantee that even the most popular idea will find its way into the new shopping center. Popularise is not a final selection. Landlords and prospective tenants must take many other elements into consideration, compatibility and success among them, before signing a lease.

To cast your vote, visit

Susan DeLano, World Design Marketing

SOURCE Shelter Cove Towne Centre