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Globe tourism branding changes with the times

Driving into Globe feels like coming home to those who love living here, so in order to share that feeling with visitors the City has partnered with Local First Arizona to create a new marketing campaign featuring a logo reflecting the beauty of the region.

The campaign was approved by City Council at its Feb. 28 meeting and represents a new phase in the evolution of economic development begun in 2018, rolling out just in time for this year’s Arizona Poppy Fest.

“When we talked about growth driving the community and the region, we learned that branding is one of the things you want to start with,” says Councilman Freddy Rios. “Through our staff’s ability to look forward and follow Council’s vision, branding has become an important piece of our forward movement.”

Globe’s new logo features an image of the Pinal Mountains in a desert color scheme with a “G” reflective of the familiar landmark west of downtown. It is a more simplified version of the previous logo and is intended to reflect “Arizona’s original hometown” for visitors the City hopes to attract.

“The state is a great tourism destination and some obvious things get a lot of notice, like the Grand Canyon and other wonderful assets we have,” says Local First Arizona Director of Rural Development Jenna Rowell. “But oftentimes, people from out-of-state are flying into Phoenix and then cruising straight to those end destinations.”

Creating a draw for out-of-state visitors is one of the main goals of statewide outreach efforts. Rowell, an Arizona native who grew up in Cottonwood, says marketing is also aimed at reminding Arizona residents of the gems in their midsts that are within driving distance.

“We’re focusing on Arizonans because Arizonans spend more than $6 billion—with a ‘B’—annually, just in California,” she says. “We get that the beaches are popular: We get that California has Disneyland, SeaWorld and all those things. But if you could carve out just a small percentage of $6 billion and get Arizonans playing in their own backyard, that could have a meaningful economic impact to communities like Globe.”

Founded in 2003, Local First Arizona is celebrating its 10th year as the state’s Rural Development Council, a designation first established through the passage of the 2013 U.S. Farm Bill. The bill created councils at the state level as advocates for rural economies and to help address the “rural resource gap” with urban markets that have larger tax bases and thus more fiscal resources.

RDCs partner with the Arizona Department of Tourism for rural advocacy at the federal level and in order to “help build a rural Arizona economy that is sustainable, resilient, and celebratory of diverse cultures.”

According to Rowell, the City took advantage of funding available through the Visit Arizona Initiative grant program. Additionally, through the Arizona Office of Tourism Globe has joined the Rural Marketing Cooperative, which offers cost-sharing and other resources available to “destination marketing organizations.”

“For Globe, that is the Globe-Miami Chamber of Commerce,” Rowell says. “They are registered with the Office of Tourism as the official organization that markets the area as a destination.”

Through the marketing cooperative, Globe’s branding package costs less than if the City would have contracted with an outside marketing firm and includes a suite of services and other resources such as a profile at ruralaz.com.

Potential visitors can visit the site, choose options and be provided with a printable itinerary directing them to the outdoor recreation, entertainment and business amenities available in the area.

The new campaign is part of the City’s long-term plan to bring tourism dollars to the region that began with the establishment of the Economic and Community Development Department five years ago. Although the COVID pandemic put a lot of the Council’s plans on hold, many projects are back on track and gaining momentum.

“We’re seeing much success with our tourism marketing  in the past five years,” says Mayor Al Gameros. “We’re going to keep moving forward and building upon the momentum. Arizona residents will be seeing more of the Globe tourism campaign  in the coming months, to bring tourism dollars to our community.”

The partnership with Local First included a public forum to gather input from stakeholders hosted at Besh Ba Gowah in December 2022 that drew an engaged  audience of more than 20 residents and local business owners.

From there, Local First generated a narrative that was provided to a graphic designer who then created a versatile logo that can be broken down into various parts for different purposes, such as icons for use on websites or window stickers for businesses in town to take advantage of the regional campaign and cross promote .

This is the second branding the Economic and Community Development Department has generated, representing an evolution along the path to economic diversity the City hopes to achieve in the future.

“The City went through an initial branding in 2018 and it was now time to do a refresh for our new marketing campaign,” Gameros says. “It’s always important to look at our brands and refresh them and upgrade them in accordance with the time we’re in.”

Councilman Rios sees the project as the next step in a process to create economic opportunity and help the City fund its vision for the future, which includes improved infrastructure and more housing for residents and those who choose to move to the Copper Corridor in the future.

“We’re still going through growing pains, but through economic development, we feel like we’re making steps forward,” Rios says. “When you can bring visitors into your community and they support our economy, it reduces the burden on the rest of the community. Just about every community you go to in Arizona has some sort of vision for bringing in tourism and bringing in revenues from outside.”

Gameros shared the City’s efforts at building a solid administrative foundation with qualified employees and hiring a lobbyist to advocate in Washington DC, Globe is well-poised to survive in the 21st century.

“One of the great things about Globe is that local stakeholders  have a common vision looking towards the future,” he says. “Our City, Gila County, Cobre Valley Regional Medical Center and the mines have truly collaborated to advance the region.”

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