Rebranding is not just about a new logo – it's about stimulating economic growth.
That was the message coming from the Whyalla City Council and Algo Mas Marketing at a community forum held in the Middleback Arts Centre on Thursday night.
A solid turnout saw a large number of residents attend the event to discuss the rebranding process.
Participants were invited to participate in discussion groups along with several other activities focusing on identifying the key aspects of Whyalla.
Acting mayor Tom Antonio felt many residents had initially misunderstood the purpose of the process.
“It's not just about designing a new logo, it's about how we can change people's perception of Whyalla, and promoting ourselves as something much bigger than just an industrial city,” he said.
“We're a city that's got a lot to offer – a lot of diversity, magnificent coast lines, great beaches, great facilities.”
“I am absolutely thrilled that people have taken the time to come here and give us their ideas about how we can move forward with a city that people can enjoy right across Australia.”
Cr Antonio said the rebranding process would be undertaken as part of ongoing operations over a number of years.
“The council is working very hard, we will roll this out once we know we can afford to do this project properly, we're not going to do this half-heartedly,” he said.
Algo Mas Marketing account manager Laura Fowler said many participants had come to better understand the process after the forum.
“A lot of people thought it was just about changing the logo, but a rebrand is so much more than that,” she said.
“It's re-positioning Whyalla and creating a new vision and key messages that we can communicate to industries and businesses to bring them into Whyalla.”
“That will really stimulate economic growth and bring tourism into the town.”
Ms Fowler said the new image would likely focus on bringing to light other aspects of Whyalla besides the steel industry.
“That will be the amalgamation of the brand itself, creating something new and exciting for Whyalla that residents can be proud of,” she said.
“People seem to want something which is truly reflective of Whyalla on how it is right now, it's not just the steelworks it's the one-off natural wonders that you can get here like the cuttlefish and the shingle beaches.”
Algo Mas Marketing managing director Julie Wrobel said it was important for community members to be ambassadors for their city.
“Talk your city up, it's your city, you're living here!” she said.
“Be positive, be proud of it, we want to get the message out there nationally and internationally to invest in Whyalla.”
Ms Wrobel said the process was fairly involved with the community, and included surveys, online contributions, and meetings with local council.
“Really the community is creating the brand, we're just visualising it,” she said.
Locals are encouraged to participate in an online survey to contribute their views if they were unable to attend the community forum: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/whyalla_rebrand
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