Challenge: Located on the Northeastern shores of Michigan, Alpena is the home of the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary. The challenge is that the activities are far too seasonal. Also, most of the main attractions in Michigan are located on the West side of the state. So what makes Alpena worth that special trip?
Solution: Roger’s Single Community Branding program helped Alpena find their focus and identify their brand, creating a brand promise and recommendations to bring their brand to life, attracting more visitors and their residents into town.
Alpena's brand direction is The Sanctuary of the Great Lakes. Their activities include anything that falls under these three categories: Marine, Body, and Soul. Alpena is your sanctuary from the storms and stresses of life. There you can rejuvenate, relax, and reenergize.
- Alpena was able to bring in a TV show called "Major League Fishing" on the Outdoor Channel. They promoted their brand on the TV show.
- The Alpena Rotary Club adopted the city's bike path and will update the trail markers with the new brand graphic design.
- Alpena hosted the Harley Davidson Owners Group and persuaded them to come using their new brand.
- They are beginning to develop a number of "Navigational Guides" to enjoy the Sanctuary of the Great Lakes:
- Fishing Your Sanctuary of the Great Lakes
- Sinkhole Exploration Guide
- Biking Your Sanctuary of the Great Lakes
- Photography Adventure Guide
- Canoe & Kayak Journey Guide
- They are recruiting events that align with the Sanctuary of the Great Lakes brand.
- Began working with a local TV station to produce a once-a-week feature on exploring the Sanctuary of the Great Lakes adventures
- The CVB, Downtown Association, and Chamber of Commerce are working together to update their website portal
- The Chamber and CVB are working on developing a visitor app
- The CVB, City and Downtown Association are using the new brand graphics on their business cards and letterhead
- Implemented the Downtown Beautification Program
- Created a Facebook page to promote the brand
- Developing the "Visitor Experience Certification Program" for local business. Training front-line employees as brand ambassadors.