Young professionals launch city re-branding effort

Filed under: Daily News |

One day after tourism and economic leaders announced a new city slogan, Live it Up!, a pair of  local young professionals and businessmen launched a Facebook page, calling for the Community Branding Task Force to reconsider its decision.

The page’s “likes” are growing at a rapid rate.

Marcus Haggard and Tucker Wannamaker of Magneti Marketing launched the “Rebrand the Springs” Facebook page that asks the task force, headed by the Colorado Springs Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Colorado Springs Regional Economic Development Center to nix the logo that goes with the slogan, Live it Up!

Cilck here to view the “Live it Up!” page.

The logo of purple mountains and baseball-style font is “amateur,” Wannamaker said.

He said he intends his criticism to be constructive and so has proposed a contest among other local designers to submit new ideas.

“I don’t want it to be a bitch fest,” he said.

He instead wants to collaborate with the CVB.

Doug Price, president and CEO of the CVB, said he expected criticism, but he is unwavering in his support of the new slogan.

He is aware of the social media buzz and criticism.

“That’s why we did empirical research,” he said. “We took all the steps by reaching out to 550 people.”

“People are entitled to their opinion, Price said. “We feel the process has great integrity.”

Click here to view the Rebrand the Springs Facebook page.

12 Responses to Young professionals launch city re-branding effort

  1. Let’s make this real simple. Go to the Live It Up page. Look at the logo, the page and the video. It’s awful. I don’t have to post a competing website to show how subpar the entire project is. Just check out this video done for Downtown Colorado Springs:

    It’s honestly not even close. The downtown video it FAR superior, to the point that I think that whoever decided to put $110K into Live It Up should be forced to reimburse the city of Colorado Springs. The Live It Up video is all talk and no follow-through. If you’re going to call a community vibrant, the people you feature afterward shouldn’t look like they have mono. The downtown video shows all the amazing events that happen and could work as a pitch video for the city and it doesn’t even cover Garden of the Gods, the AFA, Manitou, Old Colorado City, etc.

    The reason this upsets me so much isn’t just the waste of my money as a Colorado Springs taxpayer. It’s because I could name off 5 people I personally know who live in town and could probably come up with a better concept and execution in a week.

    Dave Minkus
    November 16, 2011 at 4:57 pm

  2. “Expect some criticism?” I’ve not heard one good “I really love it!” from anyone. Research efforts were poor. The study was rushed. And the end result is horrible.

    I’m with Tucker on this and we’ll be helping him in whatever way we can with Colorado Springs Young Professionals to create a new, and better brand for the city. We’ll be using whatever this project Tucker is leading comes up with as the brand we’ll be putting out for this city. And we reach almost 20,000 YP’s now in Colorado through all the groups.

    I’d also like to take up a collection and a site that people can donate through so we can take this alternative brand and take out Google/Facebook/Linkedin ads to counter accordingly and properly represent this town.

    Jon Severson
    November 16, 2011 at 5:05 pm

  3. $111,000 to come up with “Live it Up.” What a monumental waste of money. We could have had an elementary school student contest come up with something more interesting and better which reflects why Colorado Springs is such a great place to live.

    Karl Berg
    November 16, 2011 at 5:20 pm

  4. First of all, let’s all stop calling it a re-branding effort! This is a simple marketing campaign that has nothing to do with doing the ‘due diligence’ of brand architecture. The brand definition process starts internally — not as an external marketing campaign. I am so tired of companies spending outrageous amounts of dollars on external messages that have no relevancy to the actual behavior of the entity! Start walking the brand talk! What processes, metrics, and behaviors are being implemented to live the brand, how are we enlisting, equipping and empowering our communities, businesses and stakeholders to affirm this statement?

    These are questions that are ignored consistently and need to be addressed in order for any sustainable, long-term growth to occur. Geez! What a waste! Give me a break!

    Brands are built through advertising/design agencies — they are built through CONSISTENT actions, behaviors and experiences.

    Suzanne Tulien
    November 16, 2011 at 7:18 pm

  5. Well, you have to give Doug Price credit for one thing: He got everybody talking about city branding. (or, is it re-branding? unbranding?) Perhaps a good example of ‘unintended consequences’.

    He is ‘unwaivering’ in his support. The process had ‘great integrity’ . Of course he’s going to defend this boondoggle:….he just spent $111,000 for, as it now turns out, a slogan reportedly used by other communities elsewhere. And, yes, the $111,000 was at least in part, from tax dollars from the city, despite the city representative comments to the contrary.

    Did any of the 550 (down from 1,000 previously reported….) people he claims were involved actually live here?

    And, meanwhile Stone Mantel and it’s owner, Dr. Rhetoric, are laughing all the way to the bank.

    Is it possible Tim Leigh and Doug Price are brothers? There must be some kind of ‘goofy’ bug in the water downtown…….

    John Whitten
    November 17, 2011 at 8:58 am

  6. Negativity breeds negativity! Of course you’re going to hear more negative than positive – with every negative response, 10 more jump on the bandwagon. Is it perfect, no. But anything is better than what we had, which was zIp!! It’s also great to see so many organizations and people come together to work on a city/region project. After last year’s negative national press, this is great stuff! It’s interesting Tucker Wannamaker KNOWS he can better rebrand the city and the region – venture out of downtown much?

    Cassie Sellers
    November 17, 2011 at 9:21 am

  7. John, unless you stayed at a local hotel or rented a car, you’re tax dollars were not used toward the $111,000 used to fund the project.

    Total of over 1,000 people were involved in the entire process including the 550 people who were randomly surveyed. The 550 people surveyed were 200 current and former residents, 200 people who had visited or plan to visit Colorado Springs and 150 businesses who matched the profile of the businesses recruited to relocate here.

    Cassie Sellers
    November 17, 2011 at 9:26 am

  8. “Is it possible Tim Leigh and Doug Price are brothers? There must be some kind of ‘goofy’ bug in the water downtown…….”

    Well, if you knew either of these two personally, you would not ask this question. There can only be one Tim Leigh (thank goodness) and Doug Price is a polite, very likeable and well spoken gentleman. No relation!

    Vanessa McCurdy
    November 17, 2011 at 10:10 am

  9. Wow. Just couldn’t agree more. The logo and accompanying video are absolutely AWFUL. Let’s see: people think our city is conservative geezerville. So let’s use as many old, unhealthy, overweight individuals as we can. I’ve shot over a hundred TV spots in my life: this is the worst I’ve ever seen. Poor casting. Horrific videography. STILTED beyond belief. And the Lyda Hill appearance … huh?????

    Love the idea of branding our city. Why don’t you actually get some creatives who know what they’re doing? Are we shooting to promote our city as a retirement village or a place for young families and innovators to reside? Once again the institutions ooze while the real vibrancy of our city gets buried underneath it all.

    Just goes to show you: government will screw just about everything up eventually.

    Solution?Listen to the STRONG feedback. Let the locals help save this. It can and should be done.As an ex VP of Mktg at a large brand, II once spent $50k for logo/name work. The results were terrible. I had to accept the fact I wasted $50k. It happens. I wouldn’t gun this guy down for trying, but if he maintains this, he’s nuts. Accept the fact it didn’t work and use the energy (from our YOUNG guns) to fix it. If not, this will do more damage than good. I firmly believe that. The people in FC, Boulder and Denver will just be laughing at us.

    For now: EPIC FAIL.

    Jan Horsfall
    November 17, 2011 at 10:14 am

  10. Doug Price received money from the Mayor’s office, which, no matter how anybody spins it, is directly or indirectly tax money.

    So the 550 people included current and FORMER residents? Plus another 200 people who planned to visit this place? Former residents and folks who plan on visiting don’t sound like ‘current residents’ to me. So some percentage of the so-called representative sample didn’t live here after all………it would be interesting to know if any of these folks currently live in a community that has this same ‘slogan’….er, sorry, I mean: ‘brand’ ………

    Doug Price may be polite, well spoken, and a gentleman….I have also found him to be evasive and defensive when asked a direct question that he doesn’t care for, like how the CVB spent the money from the mayor’s office……….

    And Ms. McCurdy is correct: Thank goodness there is only one Tim Leigh.

    John Whitten
    November 17, 2011 at 12:15 pm

  11. What money from the Mayor’s office are you talking about? It’s a known fact that the CVB does not get money from the City or the Mayor. Majority of the funding for the CVB comes from the LART, which is generated from hotel and rental car tax – the balance of their budget comes from membership dues and other economic drivers that don’t involve taxes.

    Rick Hardy
    November 17, 2011 at 2:15 pm

  12. Re-branding effort part deux… Seems like the City of Colorado Springs and our Top Down, Command and Control “Cabal” of local insiders and string pullers still have not learned their lessons… Remember, we spent $160,000 dollars with Angelo Economics… the Austin, Texas-based economic research firm to do a “study” on Colorado Springs for the 6025 effort. And after two years and bunch of rubber-chicken meetings that were driven from the “top” we still don’t have much to show for it… Why ? Because only 1,200 surveys were completed by Angelo Economics, (Obviously this was a very small sampling of the total population and not a representative snapshot of the community). And nobody got to see what the surveys said… Only a high-level “summary” was produced. And the “results” at the end of the process… was an “Implimentation and Execution” plan for 6035 that was slanted to assign 60-70% of the deliverables and action steps back to the EDC…in an attempt to justify more money and support for an organization that was in need of a major overall in the first place.

    And it seems that history repeats itself again with this new re-branding effort for “Live it Up” (which works great if you want to emphasize our growing MMJ community, but blows big time when you are trying to create a lasting impression and brand for a proud city). This is key… only 550 people were involved in the “Empirical Research” for the review of the Live it Up campaign according to Doug Price, president and CEO of the CVB as stated in the online CSBJ article published yesterday, (Nov 16th). So who were the 550 ? How many sample logos were “Seen” by the public before this version was selected… I’m sorry but this logo and tag line is a bush league, first-year-rookie graphics-artist inspired EPIC FAIL.

    I am in total support of the “Re-Rebrand The Springs” effort, as I have seen first hand and have participated directly in a successful local grass roots effort called “DreamCity2020″ that reached out to over 3,000 local citizens with a volunteer team of 300 to take a snapshot of what our community would like to see in the year 2020. And we put ALL OF THE RESULTS ONLINE for the world to see… (Go here: www dot dreamcity2020 dot org) had to post this way because of Facebook’s aggressive URL conversion feature). Why do I know this… Because I worked with Leadership Pikes Peak, and the Gazette and a large number of motivated local volunteers to originally develop and to this day continue to host the site online. We proudly took it over from the Gazette Telegraph to make sure it was an independent effort and shows exactly what this community can do when it works together LOCALLY. And it has not cost the city a dime !

    We have immense talent in this community and deserving small businesses who should be receiving contracts for this kind of work… not outside consultants who get insider deals. How do I know this… I am the Chair of the Colorado Springs Entrepreneurs Group… A local grass roots entrepreneural meetup group with over 350 members that has been quietly growing for the past couple of years that has allowed me to gain insights and perspectives on what the challenges and issues are facing our local small business community, and what we need to do to address our local problems. Enough is enough. Time to pull this process back from the EDC and CVB and “crowdsource” this process and let the local small business community speak for itself.

    Mike Schmidt
    November 17, 2011 at 6:36 pm