This endeavor will ultimately involve developing a “tourism brand” that will motivate people to come to Detroit, just as consumer brands are designed to motivate people to purchase a particular product. The end result will be a printed document — a promotional package- containing the information needed to tell an engaging story about Metro Detroit to tourists.
“The whole purpose is to really be sure we understand the commonalties and the things that make us who we are,” said Larry Alexander, Detroit Metro Convention and Visitors Bureau president and CEO. “When people talk about branding, a lot of people immediately go to an advertising campaign or a tag line. We’re not at that point. This is about developing the story of who we are, what we can deliver.”
Alexander said the best way he describes it is with a question: What is the DNA of Detroit and the surrounding region?
“Once we reach agreement on this story and who we are, then the creative people, the advertising people, can take it and we can develop it from that.”
He added that the story is the key, that we as Metro Detroiters have to have a way to describe ourselves that is consistent across the board.
Alexander said the branding of metro Detroit has to be real and something we know is in existence.
“It’s got to be something that people believe, both locally and externally,” he said. “People have to believe it and say, ‘yes, that’s the real Detroit.’”
At this point, the focus is on what Detroit is, and what it has to offer; not what it could or should be.
“We recognize that we’ve got some great things, today; but we have to tell that story,” he said. “This is going to help us tell that story.”
He added that part of the current problem is we may not define who we are; and we may not have pride in who we are.
Visit www.detroitstories.org for more information or to give input and feedback about metro Detroit.
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