For 45 years, YA has been a leader in promotional marketing services. Their end-to-end management of more than 3,500 promotions annually equates to tens of millions of consumer interactions annually, delivering data-driven digital, social and mobile promotions ranging from rebates and rewards to loyalty programs, enter-to-win, referrals and more.
For four decades, the company headquartered out of Norwood/Young America—about 40 miles southwest of Minneapolis. But as the 21st century business community continues to evolve and YA’s focus shifted toward digital while also working to attract and retain talent, the company made the move to downtown Mpls in 2015.
It’s been a perfect match.
“With our transformation to a digital/mobile/social strategy, we knew we needed to attract employees with a new set of experiences and skills,” YA President & CEO Chris Behrens said. “It was a tough sell to ask prospective candidates to make the 80-mile roundtrip from the Twin Cities to Young America every day. We also needed space that was reflective of our new mission, vision and culture. We wanted our clients to visit us in a space that was fresh, modern and an embodiment of our new way of doing business.”
YA, now located in the Lumber Exchange Building here in downtown, made an immediate impact on the community. Behrens serves on the mpls downtown council’s executive committee, and their organization has been an active member at mdc events and The 2025 Plan’s committees. YA is also a mpls downtown council Skyline Partner in 2017.
Since 1972, YA has provided expert leadership in helping turn first-time customers into loyal brand advocates for its clients, and that philosophy and expertise has not changed. They continue to be a strategic partner in helping their clients increase customer loyalty and return on their marketing investments.
Each year, YA manages approximately $950 million worth of consumer awards and rewards. By analyzing the spending and shopping habits of consumers who participate in their campaigns, YA manages data and offers their clients tangible insights into what type of promotions will be most relevant to their customers.
“Promotions are no longer a ‘one and done’ activity,” Behrens said. “We help our clients create lasting relationships with their customers.”
They’re bringing that same passion and commitment to the downtown Mpls community.
Behrens said downtown is the core to YA’s current and future success. That’s why he is such an active member with the mpls downtown council’s leadership as well as an advocate for The 2025 Plan’s development committee’s missions to attract business downtown, to forge strong connections to the University of Minnesota and more.
“We are fully committed to the Twin Cities, and downtown is the heartbeat of this region,” Behrens said. “In fact, we have a concerted focus on becoming a larger part of the fabric of this community—a community where our employees live, work and enjoy all the wonderful amenities it has to offer.”
Behrens said the mpls downtown council has the resources, vision, passion and connections to make Mpls the Crown Jewel of the region. That makes him excited about helping with that mission, and it’s why YA is a Skyline Partner.
“As a mpls downtown council board member, the CEO of a company that employs more than 100 people in the downtown area and as a resident, I am passionate about seeing this area thrive and grow,” Behrens said. “Like other Skyline Partners, I’m committed to helping increase the safety and livability of this community, which ultimately helps commerce.”