The Winter Park-Fraser Chamber of Commerce, in conjunction with Winter Park Resort and a number of other community business leaders, has unveiled a new logo and identity which is designed to bring the community together in one cohesive brand. The new brand platform aims to cultivate an inclusive community relationship to enhance the local as well as the visitor experience.
Branding is certainly not a carefree topic. It is a critical element of any business. All too often, logo design is treated as being interchangeable with branding. Although they go hand-in-hand, they are not the same. Many businesses overlook the true potential of what a brand can and will accomplish, settling for just a logo.
Catherine Ross, Executive Director of the Winter Park-Fraser Chamber said, “This process was a huge step forward for our community. We want to highlight our strengths and get our message out there”, adding “we have not told our story well over the years. This is a new start and we are excited to put it out there”.
In Ross’s presentation at the Hill House last week, she said a memorable logo is important; it paves the way for effective branding. However, a brand is more than a logo. It’s more than just visual identification. A brand is the emotion behind the senses when your guest or customer interacts with your company on any level. Your brand is the image behind what your business believes and strives to accomplish. As a result, your brand becomes your personality and along with that personality comes numerous associations. Therefore a brand bears much more responsibility than a logo.
In the competitive world of travel and resort marketing, a brand is directly related to your overall economic success and, for years, Winter Park Resort has carried the brand and the towns of Winter Park and Fraser followed with accompaniments.
Ross said, “This isn’t just a new symbol or tagline, this is a new culture that comes at the perfect time for our community”.
As part of the new brand, participating parties have unveiled their new logo, incorporating Winter Park Resort’s historic red shield, which has been part of the resort’s primary mark since 1955, while augmenting it with a more contemporary design and wordmark. Within the shield is a snow-capped mountain, representing Parry Peak.
In keeping with the new united theme of the brand, the logo includes space to add in qualifiers such as “Colorado,” “Resort,” and “Village” to allow all the entities of the community to be represented in one consistent identification mark.
Winter Park Resorts classic “WP” shield will still be utilized on signage specifically for the Winter Park Territory, as a nod to the resort’s storied past. Over the next few months, the assembly of partners will integrate the new shield and brand messaging in preparation for the upcoming ski season.
The new brand will be used throughout Winter Park and Winter Park Resort, and will focus on the community’s representation of the quintessential Colorado experience – untouched and open. At the core of the new, cohesive brand is the recognition of the Winter Park experience as one of transformation, for those who choose to live the mountain lifestyle, and for those who come to taste it for a few days. The new tagline is “Colorado Unfiltered”.
“There really is strength in numbers, and with so many exciting developments taking place in our community, this is an opportune time to coordinate all of our efforts for the benefit of both Winter Park’s businesses, residents, and our guests,” said Ross. “Thanks to Winter Park Resort, Rendezvous Colorado LLC, Devil’s Thumb Ranch Resort & Spa, WC Johnson LLC, the Town of Winter Park, and everyone who provided feedback on this thrilling new initiative. We look forward to forging ahead into this extraordinary new era together.”
Whether you like the new symbols or not, branding takes courage because it is something that is constantly being formed by the public’s perception. Although a designer lays the foundation of a brand visually, the brand’s audience is what truly shapes it. Therefore, it is imperative that the foundation is laid correctly by falling in line with your business’ image and goals. Understanding how the market’s perception of your brand balances with your company’s goals leads to making informed branding decisions and is crucial to developing a brand that will endure and remain timeless.
Practically speaking, your brand should be ubiquitous, consistent and follow a strategy. Whereas a logo is portrayed for identification, a brand should be derived with much thought as to how your audience will respond to it. After all, branding is an emotional experience that people want to be a part of. Make it engaging.
The Brand development team contracted with Karsh Hagan, a firm out of Denver to help guide the team and create the new look and feel. Liz Agostin, Marketing Director for Winter Park Resort, said, “We had a great team and we worked hard to develop a brand, logo and tagline that would endure the test of time.” Agostin added, “This new brand will allow us to work closely with our partners on campaigns and leverage our money and resources, creating one voice for our community and resort.”
The new logo is just the first element of a winter season filled with change. Winter Park Resort is scheduled to open for the 2018-19 winter season on November 14.