Launch of new branding for town of Shrewsbury
A new brand image to give Shrewsbury a stronger and more attractive image was launched to tourism businesses and organisations today (Friday 29 June 2012) as part of an initiative to increase visitor numbers to the town and its overall profile.
The brand puts the spotlight on Shrewsbury as a town of ‘one-offs’ and originals, making the most of both the authentic Tudor architecture and the quality and number of interesting independent shops.
Feedback from those attending today’s launch was really positive and encouraging.
Destination Shrewsbury started work with businesses and organisations early this year with a workshop at The Lion at which they shared information about types of visitor, strengths of Shrewsbury and ideas for creating stronger messages.
Destination Shrewsbury was created as the lead partnership to drive forward the development of Shrewsbury as a quality, sustainable tourism destination. A priority of the partnership was to create a strong personality and brand for Shrewsbury, which was identified as the main recommendation in the new Visitor Economy Strategy published last year.
The agencies who were commissioned worked with Destination Shrewsbury which includes representatives from Shropshire Council, Shrewsbury Town Council, Shrewsbury Tourism Association, Shop in the Loop, Shropshire Tourism, and volunteer advisor Will Morris, whose background is in hotel development and attraction marketing. The creative organisations who were commissioned to create the brand worked up their approaches based on input from workshops, visitor research and firsthand experience of what Shrewsbury can offer visitors.
Mike Owen, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member with responsibility for tourism and culture, said:
“We now have a collection of images, words and ideas that give a clear strong message about why Shrewsbury is special. This is available for businesses and organisations to use to support and complement their own promotion. It’s now up to all of us to let the rest of the country know that there’s nowhere like Shrewsbury.”
A free CD containing fonts, words and images is available to help businesses and organisations start getting the message out. A particular feature of the brand is a ‘stamp’ that businesses can use alongside their own branding to draw attention to what makes them, and Shrewsbury, special.
John Hall, independent retailer and Shop in the Loop representative, said:
“Shrewsbury is strong in independent shops, cafes and restaurants. Visitors love this and the new brand puts the focus on our ‘one-offs’ all over town. It works for the old and the new.”
Destination Shrewsbury will be working with Shrewsbury Tourism Association to bring the new look and feel to the website and main visitor publications.
Destination Shrewsbury was created as the lead partnership to drive forward the development of Shrewsbury as a quality, sustainable tourism destination.
A priority of the partnership was to create a strong personality and brand for Shrewsbury which was identified as the main recommendations in the new Visitor Economy Strategy published in 2011.
Destination Shrewsbury is a non-statutory, self-managing public and private sector partnership made up of:
- Shropshire Council
- Shrewsbury Town Council
- Shrewsbury Tourism Association
- Shop in the Loop
- Shrewsbury Chamber of Commerce
- Other key stakeholders
The purpose of the partnership is to bring together key players to provide an integrated approach to co-ordinate and deliver the development of Shrewsbury by enhancing the visitor experience and exceeding their expectations, whilst maximising the economic contribution of the visitor economy.
The brand development was commissioned by Shropshire Council for the Destination Shrewsbury partnership.
Key messages from the brand toolkit include:
“Our brand is all about letting the rest of the UK know, clearly and confidently, that there’s nowhere like Shrewsbury. We want this same confidence to brush off on our words too. There’s no space for nagging why-aren’t-we-as-well-known-as such -and-such doubts from now on.”
“Too many people miss Shrewsbury on their way to somewhere else. Or they’re just passing through. This brand is for them. We want them to stop, to know where we are on the map and to head here first. We want to show them what a special place this is. And we’re going to do it by putting a spotlight on the one-offs all over the town. Some of them are more obvious than others (Darwin, our Tudor buildings, The Quarry and the Flower Show), but many of Shrewsbury’s one-offs are hidden in the little things.”