NORTH CREEK - The Gore Mountain Region Chamber of Commerce presented the results of their branding project to local chamber members, officials and interested citizens Nov. 18 at the Copperfield Inn in North Creek.
Since February of 2007, the Gore Mountain Region Chamber of Commerce has been immersed in a project to brand the Gore Mountain Region. With the support of bed tax monies, they commenced the initial phase and hired the Glen Group of North Conway, NJ.
The Glen Group is led by Nancy Clark - a former resident of Chestertown.
"She really knows the area and the personality of the region, which is key," said Ed Milner, chairman of the chamber's branding project.
Conway presented the recommended branding including a new logo and other graphics, a tagline, and the "brand promise" for the region.
"Your brand," Clark explained, "is the set of values associated with your name and symbol in the mind of the consumer. A strong brand is critical to long-term success, as it shapes a successful marketing strategy, and communicates the unique selling proposition, the single most important point of differentiation, to the customer."
The chamber defines the Gore Mountain Region as including all or portions of the towns of Indian Lake, Johnsburg, Minerva, Newcomb, Chester, and Warrensburg - parts of three counties and more than a dozen hamlets.
The goal of both the Glen Group and the chamber was not to reinvent the region, but to discover an existing brand to develop.
"Our research found that the brand's personality - characteristics most commonly associated with the Gore Mountain Region - include mountains, authenticity, genuineness, scenic beauty, peacefulness and tranquility, and clean, fresh air," said Clark. "As someone who grew up in the region, I wasn't surprised to find that the region is seen as rich in recreation, family-friendly, an excellent value, easy to get to and a place to experience nature."
From this, Clark and the Glen Group developed the tagline, "Purely Adirondack," which sits inside their designed brand for the region and the logo.
"Purely Adirondack is replicated everywhere, but you actually own it," said Clark at the presentation.
"The logo itself went through quite an evolutionary process," said Milner.
The branding process was focused on research. The Glen Group sought out available research on the current brand identity/identities of the Gore Mountain Region and its communities as well as visitor patterns to the region.
Based on the results of research and surveys, Glen Group made three recommendations:
1) The region should be made synonymous with the Adirondacks, with unspoiled scenery and the peaceful and relaxed feeling, and that top activities should also be highlighted.
2) The region should cross-market seasons aggressively.
3) Packages and promotions should focus on families, couples and groups, with the understanding that typically women make the majority of family travel decisions. Long-term, focusing on families should pay off since there is a strong connection between being introduced to the region as a child and returning to visit as an adult.
"The whole point of this process was to develop a brand that can now be incorporated into all the marketing, advertising and communications emanating from the chamber and its members," explained Clark. "But," she pointed out, "it's not enough to put a new logo and tagline on ads or signs. It's really important that the entire tourism community understand and embrace this brand."
The brand is now property of the Gore Mountain Region and all of its members and can be used in business advertising and promotions throughout the region.
Those interested in receiving a Brand Identity Manual, the logo and more information on its use should attend one of the upcoming training workshops. The workshops will be hosted at Tannery Pond Community Center at 4 and 7 p.m. Dec. 9 and 8 a.m. Dec 10. For more information on these workshops, contact the Gore Mountain/Town of Johnsburg Chamber of Commerce at 251-2612.
"One of our goals with this project is to attract people to the chamber so that they can utilize this brand," said Dave Bulmer, chamber president.
All of the chamber leadership is hopeful that local businesses and individuals will take this opportunity to join and see the branding effort through for the betterment of the region, Bulmer said.