Rebranding and “a turn for the better”

Marketing Muscatine effort more than just a new logo

 

MUSCATINE, Iowa – A new logo and a new tag line for Muscatine were revealed to the Muscatine City Council on Thursday (July 12), the first of several meetings with community members to showcase the logos’ design and meaning. The culmination of many years of work from leaders of several entities in Muscatine, the logo and tagline are part of a renewed effort to market Muscatine.

 

Muscatine-City-1C-ColorIn fact, the inability to adequately market Muscatine was one of the key reasons that early discussions led to the formation of a leadership committee to study and develop a logo and tagline that would work for the entire community of Muscatine. The committee included members from the City of Muscatine, Greater Muscatine Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Convention and Visitor’s Bureau, Muscatine Power & Water, Muscatine Community College, Muscatine Community School District, and UnityPoint-Trinity Muscatine.

 

From early on the commitment was to develop a logo and tagline that could be used by all, a commonality that demonstrates the commitment of the community to be the place where living, working, raising a family, and retiring all takes a turn for the better.

 

Working with Northstar Marketing, Inc, out of Nashville, Tenn., the committee coordinated research on the community of Muscatine, on consumer awareness and the perception of Muscatine, and on competition for regional tourism and economic development. Out of this research came a strategic DNA that would form the foundation for development of the logo design and the tagline.

 

That DNA:

 

“For those with global horizons who want to watch the sunset in the Midwest, Muscatine, an industrial power between Iowa City and the Quad Cities, is where the great bend of the Mississippi turns small town ingenuity into unbounded enterprise, so you can access the world stage or watch it flow by.”

 

Muscatine history was not forgotten in the development of the new logo and tagline, and was fundamental in the development of the DNA statement.

 

Watching the sunset is in reference to the Mark Twain’s (Samuel Clemens) often used quote on Muscatine sunsets (“And I remember Muscatine – still more pleasantly – for its summer sunsets. I have never seen any, on either side of the ocean that equaled them.”)

 

The phrases Industrial power along with turning small town ingenuity into unbounded enterprise are another historical reference that also reaches into the future. The lumber industry was the first enterprise that brought recognition to Muscatine in the mid-1860s. H.J. Heinz also brought recognition to Muscatine by building the companies first plant outside of Pittsburgh here in 1892 to take advantage of the fertile soil located in this area.

 

Of course, the early 20th century button industry that led to Muscatine becoming known as the “Pearl Button Capital of the World” was another chapter in the greatness of Muscatine.

 

During the last 100 years companies and corporations established in Muscatine have become recognized worldwide for their products and services and that trend continues today with new businesses and their products becoming recognized throughout the region, nation, and the world.

 

The final part of that DNA does look into the future and notes how Muscatine is the place where you can access the world stage or just watch the world flow by.

 

The rebranding is just one part of a long term commitment by various entities in this community to help Muscatine grow in population, in recreational and employment opportunities, and in housing and educational options.

 

The two-year project to reconstruct Mississippi Drive from Mad Creek to Broadway is part of that commitment by the City of Muscatine to enhance the infrastructure and create a sense of place for residents and visitors alike. The Grandview Avenue project in 2019 and 2020 will add another enhancement as will the proposed 2nd Street revitalization in 2020 or 2021.

 

This “turn for the better” will entrust to future generations a connection between the Mississippi River and Downtown Muscatine, an area filled with history and tradition and an area filled with endless possibilities for residents, businesses, and visitors. Those possibilities do not stop at Downtown Muscatine but extend to all corners of the community.

 

When the next phase of Riverside Park improvements is completed, Muscatine will have a recreational and entertainment venue second to none up or down the Mississippi River.

 

When Mississippi Drive is complete, the redefined traffic pattern enhanced for pedestrian traffic, landscaped medians, and wayfinding signs will allow for a greater connection and flow between the riverfront and the downtown area.

 

When the corridor from Mad Creek to the U.S. 61 bypass is complete, Muscatine will have a main artery that will have increased business and residential potential.

 

This is also part of the branding effort.

 

It was mentioned at the City Council presentation on July 12 that the rebranding did not take into consideration the history of Muscatine and that the tagline was vague, confusing, and could be viewed as saying that Muscatine was never great.

 

The opposite is more to the fact.

 

Muscatine was located on the bend of the Mississippi River for many reasons and just one could have been because this is where opportunity takes “a turn for the better”. Throughout the history of Muscatine (and Bloomington before that) this fact was proven. It is being proven today, and will be proven again in the future.

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2 Replies to “Rebranding and “a turn for the better””

  1. The logo is fine, kind of boring, but man that tagline is terrible. The shortened version is better than the other version I read, but it still casts a bit too much shade upriver. It also makes it sound like things have been real crappy around here, BUT we’re making a turn for the better! We promise! Please, come here! Please don’t leave!

    It’s weird guys.

    Here are some too late suggestions. None of them are particularly great either, but they keep the tagline’s focus on how great Muscatine is without the need for any subtle comparison to how much everywhere else apparently sucks.

    Welcome Home!
    Treasure of the Heartland.
    Spirit of the Midwest.
    Sowing the Future.
    You’ve Found Home.
    Built for the Future.
    Growing Tomorrows.
    A Positive Light, Sunrise to Sunset.
    Pulse of the Heartland.

    Like

    1. Thank you for the feedback. As we develop our marketing plan we are looking for ways to incorporate “a turn for the better” with other phrases, such as those you suggested, that exemplify the positives of living, working, and raising a family in Muscatine.

      Like

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