Bill Flanagan on Pittsburgh Economic History

Piper Creative recorded a podcast with Bill Flanagan Pittsburgh has undergone a significant reinvention over the 30 years he has been a business journalist. He shared some stories of Pittsburgh's economic history that few people know.

Bill hosts "Our Region’s Business", a Sunday-morning business affairs program co-produced by the Allegheny Conference on Community Development and WPXI-TV. He is also the Chief Corporate Relations Officer for the Allegheny Conference.

How did we make this interview happen? We actually have footage of us pitching Bill at the Pittsburgh Business Show. It's a great look into the guerilla networking you have to do when you're in startup mode.

Bill Flanagan Pittsburgh Perspective

Over the course of our conversation, Bill talked about how Pittsburgh has changed between the 1980s and today. Bill saw the local economy crater after many of the steel mills closed down and other large businesses moved their headquarters out of Pittsburgh.

A lot of the groundwork for the current boom was laid in the 1940s. Leaders like Mellon, Carnegie, and Frick founded schools and invested in industries other than steel. That took real foresight.

In the intervening years, investments in education, healthcare systems, and technology have given birth to a new "golden age" for southwestern Pennsylvania. Now Facebook, Amazon, Google, and Uber all have offices in southwestern Pennsylvania.

Pittsburgh needs to continue to maintain its long-term vision over the next two decades.

Providing Value

After conducting the interview, we continued to provide value by giving Bill some tips to improve the performance of his show, "Our Region's Business", on YouTube.

One piece of advice we offered Bill was to add End Screen links to all of his videos. He has such a rich library of interviews with business leaders around Pittsburgh. The digital tools available would make for compelling callback and deeper dives.

We are currently utilizing the end screens on our own videos, but believe we can get so much more creative with how they are utilized.

Daphne Kass