Columbia Convention and Visitors Bureau unveils new city slogan

Thursday, April 4, 2013 | 3:13 p.m. CDT; updated 12:31 p.m. CDT, Friday, April 5, 2013
The Woodruff Sweitzer advertising agency and Columbia Convention and Visitors Bureau unveils the tourism bureau's new logo Thursday afternoon at The Blue Note.

COLUMBIA — The Columbia Convention and Visitors Bureau unveiled the city's new slogan Thursday afternoon at The Blue Note

"Columbia, MO: What You Unexpect."

The new tag line will replace the one the city has used since 2003: "The smart, innovative, eclectic, clever, savvy, vibrant too-dynamic-to-fit-into-a-short-tagline city.”

The new tag line is accompanied by a colorful new marketing logo, print ads and a television commercial.

The tourism bureau and the Woodruff Sweitzer advertising agency worked together to develop the tag line and logo after conducting research by reaching out to tourists through phone interviews and online surveys. They also created the 2003 slogan together.

The budget was $45,000, bureau director Amy Schneider said. 

Columbia resident Kate Bryant said she liked the slogan because of its "simple approach."

Joyce Gelina, an employee in the Columbia Office of Cultural Affairs, said she liked the use of "COMO" in the logo because it "captured Columbia."

"I liked the 'unexpect' part, too, because it's catchy," she said.

The vibrant logo matched the mood of the news conference, which included colorful balloons and free brownie ice cream. While attendees made their way into the theater, a guitarist played background music and the Como Derby Dames roller derby team skated around the room.

The tourism bureau employees wore scarves that matched the orange, pink, red and blue of the logo.

The commercial, complete with a unicyclist and man in a gorilla suit, will air in Kansas City and St. Louis, the cities that supply the most tourists to Columbia. 

The mission of the new campaign is to establish Columbia as a tourist destination, City Manager Mike Matthes said. He said many people don't think of Columbia as a vacation spot. Over 10,000 people in Boone County have tourism-related jobs. 

Woodruff Sweitzer presented the tourism bureau with five choices, but it was a unanimous decision to choose the new tagline and logo, Schneider said. 

"The new brand is a culmination of months of hard work, and it's been hard not to tell," Web and Communications Manager Megan McConachie said. "We just hope everyone is as excited as we are about it."

Supervising editor is Richard Webner.

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Bill Fisher April 5, 2013 | 5:26 a.m.

That cost us $45,000?

"Government wasting money; what you'd expect."

(Report Comment)
Dave Overfelt April 5, 2013 | 6:36 a.m.

I was thinking that was a costly three words they came up with. Also impressed that they managed to take an absolutely terrible slogan and somehow come up with something MORE ridiculous.

(Report Comment)
Ellis Smith April 5, 2013 | 6:45 a.m.

A camel: A horse that was designed by committee.

(Report Comment)

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