August 25, 2022--Jonesboro Unlimited (JU) has begun branding the city of Jonesboro.
As part of JU’s five-year strategic plan, the Economic Development organization set out to position Jonesboro for further development with the addition of marketing tools that are unique to Jonesboro.
Craig Rickert, Director of Communications for Jonesboro Unlimited, and Mallory Black, Director of Marketing for the Jonesboro Regional Chamber of Commerce, lead a 12-person steering committee tasked with overseeing the process.
“This is something that we’ve needed for a while,” Rickert said, “For years, our community has thrived without the benefit of one true, unifying image, logo, tagline, you name it. But now, we have officially begun that process to find that common thread that can sew together all the different aspects, personalities, and assets, that make Jonesboro special.”
Ben Muldrow, with Arnett-Muldrow out of Greenville, South Carolina, has been hired by JU to help develop Jonesboro’s brand identity. Arnett-Muldrow has branded hundreds of communities and organizations across the country and overseas.
“We are thrilled to have partnered with the amazing folks of Jonesboro to work on the Community Branding Initiative. As a regional hub, a University town, and home to many businesses and industries, Jonesboro has such a bright future and needs a versatile stage to tell its unique story.”
The search for that stage started with over 600 people responding to a recent Community Identity Survey. The survey, conducted online, gauged responses to an array of questions from the types of imagery that best describes Jonesboro to where you would take someone from out of town to make a special memory.
The steering committee will review the survey results in the final week of August. That week also includes the bringing together of eight focus groups. Those groups represent business owners, leaders in hospitality and recreation, Arkansas State University, elected officials, and the public. JU expects over 100 people to take part.
Jonesboro will have a new look available for any organization or business when the finished product comes out.
“That’s the key to this process, making sure it’s implemented by as many people as possible,” Mallory Black said, “There is such an overwhelming feeling of community pride here. It’s exciting that we will have the branding to back it up very soon.”
“We already have people asking when they can get their hands on it because they are so excited to have it and want to use it,” said Rickert.
Rickert says they couldn’t be taking on this project without the support of key stakeholders. The City of Jonesboro, including Mayor Harold Copenhaver, is on board. The Advertising and Promotion Commission, Chamber of Commerce, and the Downtown Jonesboro Alliance supported the plan before JU made the announcement official.
Arkansas State University’s new Chancellor, Dr. Todd Shields, is backing the plan too. Shields, the guest speaker at JU’s August 22nd Summer Meeting, said that the better branded Jonesboro is, the more it helps recruit future students to A-State.
Arnett-Muldrow’s branding process typically takes 16 weeks to complete. With that timeline, Jonesboro should be able to start rolling out its new “look” before the end of the year.