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Old 03-20-2002, 09:33 PM   #1
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how not to market an urban area

i thought i had seen it all when the city of ottawa, my current home, unveiled it's 'technically beautiful' slogan which was to be the center piece of the city's marketing campaign. the slogan was an effort to attract more hi tech firms to the area, something which we used to have a lot of and now don't for some odd reason it cost the municipality a couple hundred thousand canadian(so it wasn't that much ) and flopped.

but the fair city of london ontario has come to the aid of ottawa in terms of stupidity.

from the london free press
Quote:
Wednesday, March 20, 2002
Councillors strive to put serious spin on slogan

By MARY-JANE EGAN, London Free Press

It was supposed to be catchy and clever but some city councillors fear London's new slogan celebrating our cultural diversity will make the city the butt of jokes.

London, Canada. All Mixed Up!

That's the heading on 1,000 posters and 5,000 brochures produced at a cost of $12,000 to the city, unveiled Monday to city councillors, whose initial reactions ran the gamut from chuckles to stunned silence.

"I like the idea of celebrating our diversity, but I fear that slogan could make us the laughingstock of every municipality across Canada unless they really sit down and understand the spirit in which it's said," Coun. Ed Corrigan said.

Coun. Susan Eagle said she loves the content and images on the brochure -- that features individuals from varied ethnic backgrounds holding a huge, multicoloured floral bouquet -- but is "mystified" by the slogan.

"Honestly, I thought it was either a mistake or an April Fool's joke that came early," Eagle said.

But the volunteer members of the city's race relations advisory committee are revelling in the media attention their handiwork has created.

"Our first thought was, 'Ugh, this might bother some people,' " said Brian Matthews, advisory committee chairperson. "So we debated it and debated it and decided we wanted to call attention to our diversity and this could do it."

Committee members came up with the idea in partnership with the city's corporate communications division, the city manager's office and community services.

The slogan, which set local radio talk-show lines buzzing and drew media attention from as far as Toronto, is an overwhelming success, says Controller Joe Swan.

"The message is to get people to stop and think about our changing community," Swan said. "The slogan is the attention-grabber and it's like a work of art. From there, it invites you to explore what's in the pamphlet and the message there is very positive."

Coun. Bill Armstrong is so concerned he's recommending the race relations advisory committee consider reprinting the brochures to eliminate the offending slogan or replace it.

Armstrong favours Growing Together and also likes the slogan below the picture, declaring, "Together We're Better."

Armstrong fears the All Mixed Up! slogan suggests London is in the throes of muddled confusion.

Coun. Fred Tranquilli says the slogan was a "mistake," but he's not willing to pay more taxpayer dollars to reprint the brochures.

"I think everyone was quite shocked and uncomfortable when it was unveiled. It's not having the desired effect," he said. "But I think it's a lesson to be learned about how communication goes out that's apparently on behalf of the city."

WHAT OTHERS SAID

Coun. Roger Caranci: "It's a tempest in a teapot. I've got bigger things to worry about like good roads and garbage pickup."

Coun. Joni Baechler: "You can put a spin on it that's awful and funny or you can put a positive spin on it. I hope it generates positive discussion."

Coun. Cheryl Miller: "It's not a slogan I would have chosen, but I love the concept of the mixed bouquet, which is what we've got when you look at our diversity. People shouldn't be blinded by the slogan."

Dan McDonald, director corporate communications, City of London: "It was a way of grabbing people's attention. It's a little adventuresome but it's getting attention."

Daniel Robinson, assistant professor information and media studies, University of Western Ontario: "The problem is All Mixed Up isn't that far from all screwed up. You might see All Mixed Up as an ad line for some kind of really quirky product trying to make fun of itself but it doesn't really work well in this context."
note:
london, ontario is generally percieved to be a very good representation of the canadian population in general which is quite varied in it's cultures and ethnicities.

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Old 03-22-2002, 06:27 PM   #2
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fine!

if no one else cares about witty urban planning mix ups besides me i'll just take my internet and go home then!
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Old 03-22-2002, 06:29 PM   #3
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awww....

*pats the angry kobe-san gingerly on the top of his head*

I read it! I just forgot to post in it.

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Old 03-22-2002, 06:35 PM   #4
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'every post deserves a response'...

thanks sula, you're humoring me made my day. one day maybe i'll email you!
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Old 03-22-2002, 06:54 PM   #5
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Well kobe, I'm going to stop in to say BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHA. London, ha.

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Old 03-22-2002, 06:56 PM   #6
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yay! an email! I had forgotten what they look like.

so now you may go post in my thread in YOUR forum.
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