Fairfield Ledger

Neighbors Growing Together | Oct 20, 2016

Council approves branding concept

By NICOLE HESTER-WILLIAMS Ledger staff writer | Sep 27, 2016
Photo by: Nicole Hester-Williams Ledger Photo 1st Sgt. Edward Pforts of the Iowa Army National Guard presents a certificate of appreciation to Fairfield Mayor Ed Malloy on behalf of the 224th Engineer Battalion. The battalion was stationed in Fairfield from 1968 until earlier this year when it moved to Cedar Rapids.

The Fairfield City Council unanimously approved a new city logo and tagline during its Monday night meeting.

Bill Baker of Total Destination Marketing presented the proposed idea, and said the firm had been working on concept designs for several months.

The Oregon-based marketing firm provides destination branding for small cities, and has been working on brand testing for the Fairfield Iowa Convention and Visitors Bureau and concept designs for the city of Fairfield. Branding refers to the taglines and images a city uses to market itself.

CVB executive director Rustin Lippincott said the firm was initially hired to assist the visitor’s bureau with its branding project several months ago.

“We realized that there was an opportunity for the city of Fairfield to get some of the benefits of a community brand as well, so we brought the city in on it, too,” Lippincott said.

During the presentation, Baker explained that after receiving hundreds of survey responses from community members, conducting face-to-face interviews, working with a brand advisory committee and conducting three external research tests, his firm had come up with a product that he hoped would resonate with the community.

Baker said that Fairfield provides the most creative and eclectic experience of small towns in Iowa. He explained the process of creating the city’s tagline and logos.

“’Connect. Create. Celebrate.’ is the recommended tagline for the city,” Baker said, adding that the visitor’s bureau had been using the “Tune into our Vibe” for a while.

The firm designed a logo for the city where the second “F” in Fairfield is transformed into a “tree of inspiration,” where its branches blossom into what Baker called a “painter’s pallet” of colorful spheres. The intention of the logo is to represent the creative energy and diversity of the city.

Baker said the city could use the tree of inspiration for the city’s signature.

“The tree of inspiration is a stand-alone element and the bureau and the city have the opportunity to use it as a linking device,” Baker said, adding that it could be used at the city’s gateway, on coffee mugs, in signage and banners and even as a logo on city vehicles.

Baker said the research had been completed, and the presented design came back as the top choice.

“I love it; it’s really well done — it’s a big step for us,” said councilor John Revolinski. “I’m really thrilled.”

Mayor Ed Malloy said the design “rose to the top” when it came to other presented logos.

Baker said the final design would be ready within the coming weeks.  “I’m really excited to see this process and how it’s involved community members and professionals from the outside,” Lippincott said in an interview today. “We’re really zoning in on the best ways to promote Fairfield as a destination, but also as a place to live and do business and go to school; we’re putting Fairfield on the map.”

In other news, 1st Sgt. Edward Pforts of the Iowa Army National Guard presented a certificate of appreciation to the city of Fairfield from the 224th Engineer Battalion of the Army National Guard that was formerly stationed in Fairfield.

“The 224th had a long, almost half a century history in Fairfield,” Pforts said. “It’s been a great relationship.”

Pforts said the certificate of appreciation was in recognition of the city’s outstanding support of the battalion from 1968 to 2016, when the battalion was deactivated and moved to Cedar Rapids.

“We’re honored to receive that,” Malloy said of the certificate.

Pforts said the 224th Engineer Battalion was now in Cedar Rapids, and that the 1034th Composite Supply Company took its place in Fairfield.

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