Freeze! Lansdale Logo Police!
As Lansdale's Communication Commission and Economic Development Committee are now tasked with being the leaders in implementing the Lansdale Borough brand narrative and brand platform into the community over the next two years, the two groups have begun talks on the how, where and what of its branding initiative.
On Monday, with the aid of a 100-plus page brand manual, the groups met jointly and began to classify the implementation of various suggested branding touch points as easy, moderate and difficult — aka immediate, within the first year and down the road.
What's a touch point? It is a resource or method used to build the brand in the minds of residents and visitors to Lansdale on a daily basis. For example, a couple branding touch points include social media, borough employees, phone greetings, services, trade shows, public relations, local and national marketing and a website. The "word of mouth" touch point was classified by the two groups as "easy," while "services" was deemed "moderate."
The touch point of "borough employees" prompted Economic Development Committee Vice Chairman Richard Strahm to recommend putting logos on borough vehicles and equipment, but in a consistent and proper fashion.
"We need to be cognizant of people that may use the mark in conjunction with a commercial endeavor," Strahm said. "We need to police it so we don't end up with unintended results."
Council President Matt West, a member of the Communication Commission, said the more that want to use the logo, the more easy it becomes for the logo and tagline to be ruined, if it does not go through the proper development.
"We should be keeping track of who gets a copy of the logo, so as not to become a non-explicit use," West said.
Strahm said the brand manager would need to keep track of the brand marks.
"They have to be constantly looking for other uses of our mark. If it's unacceptable, we need to send a cease-and-desist letter," Strahm said.
"Or, 'Here's How to Use It Properly' at least," West said.
Communication Commission Vice Chairwoman Darlene Kleinschmidt asked if the borough can trademark the logo.
Borough Manager Timi Kirchner said she would talk to brand developer North Star Destination Strategies to see what to do with trademarking the logo.
Kirchner added that she is in the midst of quarterly staff meetings, where conversations on how to use the logo on borough vehicles has come up.
Communication Commission Chairman and Councilman Denton Burnell said both groups will be taking "baby steps" in developing a vision on how to proceed for two years and beyond.
"This is our opportunity to change the language people use to describe Lansdale," he said. "One of the key things is the strategic platform and the brand narrative."
Burnell said everyone — council, residents and employees — has the responsibility to change said dialogue.
"It's time to get engaged," he said. "I'd like each one of us to grab onto every aspect of this."
Economic Development Committee Chairwoman Mary Fuller said the brand is what people say about you when you're not around, repeating what's been told to council numerous times by North Star.
"There are (negative) things people have been saying (about Lansdale). It's our goal to make it past tense," she said. "We need to change the perception. We are making it so, if we reconvene in two years and do some survey, the people want to say the same things they said in (the survey used to develop Lansdale's brand)," she said.
"We all feel strongly about what we have become and the potential of what we can be," Fuller said. "Here's where we get working and put it to action."
While there was talk of the logo Monday night, Burnell emphasized that it's much more than the L. — It's about connecting the important aspects of the brand narrative with constituents and residents.
"When you see a product you like, you associate it with the brand. They connect you to what they sell. That's what we need to do," Burnell said.
Burnell gave the two committees a homework assignment: Review the exhaustive list of brand touch points, come up with some points not on the list, and brainstorm creative ways to use the narrative.
"People are recognizing that we are in motion. We are moving forward. We are doing things," Burnell said. "We need to grab a hold of them with this assignment, move forward, and make it real."