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Branding Rowan

What's Our Aspiration?

See how many of these questions you can answer correctly:

Which animal is on Kellogg’s Frosted Flakes boxes?

What is Las Vegas’ slogan?

What two things are on the Rowan County seal?

If you could answer only two of those questions, you’re in good company. Most of us know that Tony the Tiger is the Frosted Flakes guy and “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.”

Fewer people can answer the third question. Give yourself an extra pat on the back if you knew that the county seal includes the North Carolina flag and the outline of Rowan County.

Aaron Church, Rowan’s county manager, has been talking up efforts to come up with a vision, logo and slogan for Rowan County, all in an effort to develop the county’s brand.

Church is not saying that having a modern logo will convince a site selection expert or company CEO to bring jobs and growth to Rowan. But, he says, “having a fresh, 21st century look could possibly make that person stay on your web pages a little longer.”

Church told the Salisbury Rotary Club on Tuesday that he initially thought developing a logo for Yadkin County, his last employer, would be simple. Then two of his county commissioners who made their living growing tobacco realized there was no tobacco leaf in the logo, and the process closed down. The final product appears to tout agriculture, the Yadkin River and grapes symbolic of local wineries. For the record, though, tobacco leaves do appear prominently elsewhere on the Yadkin County website.

Logos are not just about reflecting a community’s heritage and its current status. There’s also an aspirational side. How would we want the county to be known? What are we planning to make our focus as we move forward?

If you have ideas about that, please speak up. The group working on the county’s branding expects the effort to take some time. Funds for the work are coming from the Tourism Development Authority, which gets revenue through the motel occupancy tax. So, appropriate, visitors’ money will help us develop a strategy to attract more visitors, residents and jobs. That’s a smart way to do it. Now, let’s see what develops.

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