Editor's Note: This story is part of a month-long series that highlights 31 ideas included in the "Mansfield Rising" plan. The 67-page document was created by 15 local leaders after attending the South by Southwest Conference last March in Austin, Texas.
Idea 2: To develop a brand for downtown Mansfield
MANSFIELD -- Developing a brand for downtown Mansfield is an immediate priority for the team that created the 'Mansfield Rising' plan, according to team member Jodie Perry.
When presenting the plan to Richland County Commissioners in February, Perry said the brand needs to be "aspirational, but true." The team intends to work with an expert and hopes to present a brand that will be adopted across organizational and perhaps city lines.
The plan states the purpose of branding for downtown Mansfield is to "weave a powerful and positive story to raise awareness about why this is a great place to live and conduct business."
Further, beyond raising awareness outside the city limits, a brand and positive message could improve the story Mansfield residents recite about the city, in turn promoting civic pride.
While some local organizations already have similar themes, the messages are organization specific. Without a city-wide brand, the plan explains it's difficult to "drive a cohesive message."
In developing a brand, this cohesive message would be identified and someone would be chosen to manage and care for it.
The content -- logos, slogans and more -- resulting from the branding campaign would be open, so anyone could access it when delivering messages about downtown Mansfield.
The plan highlights Marion, Ohio's MarionMade! campaign as an example. The program, sponsored by the Marion Community Foundation recognizes the community's past, but is further focused on the present and future of the "lively and remarkable community." The website presents Marion in a positive light.