DOWNEY - In the hope of creating a more unified and consistent image for the city of Downey, the City Council initiated a city-wide branding program last Tuesday that is slated to leverage Downey's strengths while addressing its weaknesses.Adopted as a priority by the Council, city officials believe the branding program, which comes just months after the city upgraded its website, is essential to effectively market and position Downey as a unique community where businesses thrive and people want to live. According to a staff report, the city will contract with Northstar Inc. who will implement a three-phase branding program that will analyze Downey's past and current identity while evaluating the city's strengths, weaknesses, community assets, competitors, and prospective residents. During the first phase, Northstar will launch a Downey-specific website that will feature information about the Downey branding program. The interactive website will also offer online surveys for residents to provide input that will assist Northstar with the branding program's development. In the program's second stage, Northstar analyzes how stakeholders, residents, visitors and prospective consumers and residents perceive the city of Downey. This analysis will identify Downey's top five economic development competitors and develop a plan to create a better business landscape. Lastly, Northstar will provide a new logo and graphic materials for Downey and suggest marketing messages for community and economic development. The branding plan will also include the option of installing new entryway signage or custom wraps for public vehicles. According to a staff report, the comprehensive branding initiative is estimated to cost nearly $90,000. The entire branding process is expected to take approximately one year.
********** Published: July 1, 2010 - Volume 9 - Issue 11