Southlake announces new branding campaign

After about four years of planning, the city of Southlake announced a new tourism branding campaign at the monthly Southlake Chamber of Commerce luncheon Nov. 20 to resounding applause of the audience.

As part of the 2011 economic development master plan, the city wanted to create a new brand and destination message for advertisements and promotional material. A small, temporary campaign occurred after the 2011 plan, but for various reasons it was dropped.

After a proposal process was completed, the city selected Cubic, Inc., a Tulsa-based advertising agency, in May to conduct research and develop a comprehensive "immersion campaign" to draw people to Southlake.

"The city never really did the whole research and immersion campaign before due to a variety of factors," Jill Lind said, the Southlake tourism marketing manager. "And so the opportunity came up for us to do it this year so we did the proposal process and narrowed it down to three firms. Cubic was selected and they really dug right in. They were great."

Soon after the deal was finalized, Cubic sent their representatives to Southlake to tour the area and get a feel for the demographics.

The interview process Cubic conducted was extensive: the agency met with city management, the economic development department, hotel management, retailers and a variety of residents. Through all of the interviews the agency noted four common themes: achievement, Southlake Carroll Dragons, planning and safety.

From those themes, the agency then crafted a summary that was compiled from all of the interviews, "Southlake, Texas is an island of achievement inhabited by American dreamers who plan everything, play by the rules and win."

In addition, the agency created a number of mock-up advertisements that most prominently feature the word "perfect."

"I think that we're going to do a play on words," Lind said. "It was something that they heard consistently in every interview that they had."

Lind stressed that it is not a tagline but is part of the message that residents have expressed about their town.

According to Lind, advertisements will start to pop up online and in print outlets around the Dallas-Fort Worth area and in other "drivable markets" such as Oklahoma City and Wichita Falls over the next few months.

A new municipal website is also in the works and is scheduled to go live early next year. It is planned to compliment the style of the new campaign.