The city of Kaukauna is on an upward trend that could positively impact long-term economic development and thus quality of life for its residents and stakeholders. The city has kicked-off a branding process in an effort to continue and enhance the momentum.
Kaukauna has enjoyed a level of financial stability thanks to its industrial tenants – namely frozen pizza, machining, and paper. More recently, the city has seen substantial residential growth and various redevelopment projects in the downtown.
“Kaukauna deserves a strong reputation and we’re starting to see more of that,” said Mayor Tony Penterman. “We have a lot of high-quality amenities: exceptional schools, one of the most innovative libraries in the state, and an expansive park system to name a few. We want our residents to embrace the pride they have in their city. And also show surrounding communities all that Kaukauna has to offer.”
The growth continues with new medical facilities and expanding local papermills. These developments will create more jobs and increase the commercial tax base that gets reinvested into the city to support initiatives like the connective trails and 1100-ft boardwalk crossing the Fox River.
“We have a vision for our future and it’s attainable,” said Robert Jakel, Director of Planning and Community Development for Kaukauna, “but we need to reflect our vision and the quality of our city in our brand and communications.”
The branding process involves a series of public engagement opportunities, including discovery workshops, focus groups, and surveys to gather insights from residents, businesses, and local organizations.
“City brands aren’t created out of thin air,” said Caroline Chaikin, Director of Marketing and Communications at Guide Studio. “They already exist in the fabric of the community. We just need to unearth the brand so we can help the city articulate who they are and establish a vision along with a visual identity that reflects both who they are today and where they’re going in future.”
While the project scope includes the development of a new logo, the information gathered from public engagement will be used to develop a brand strategy and communications tools for the city, and is expected to help stir pride and champion economic development initiatives.
“Brand is so much more than a logo. It’s what people think of when they hear your city’s name,” said Chaikin. “Take Nike’s brand for instance; it stands for perseverance, strength, and hard work, but their mark is just a swoosh. Logos are just the visual reminder of what the brand represents.”
The project kicked-off in February and is expected to be complete in September, but city officials anticipate that brand implementation will occur over a period of time. “This brand will be leveraged to its fullest capacity,” said Jakel. “It won’t happen right away, but we will see the new brand on signage throughout the city in the future.”
Want to get involved in this initiative? Visit the official brand development website to track project progress, F.A.Q., sign up for updates, and more. And most importantly, the community’s help is needed for the brand development survey. Help build an authentic brand for the city of Kaukauna; the survey should take only 10 minutes and can be accessed through the brand development website – www.kaukaunabrand.com.