Morgantown launches municipal rebranding initiative

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — The City of Morgantown has begun an in-house rebranding effort that will include a new logo, seal, and messaging.

The director of communications, Drew Bailey, said they want to retain the historic character of the city but bring up-to-date aspects compatible with electronic platforms.

Drew Bailey

“We don’t really have a city-wide consensus, like as far as a tagline or a mission,” Bailey said. “We have pieces of what you would consider a brand, but not the whole picture.”

Members of the communications department will use social media to get input and feedback from citizens. Bailey said they really want to create a brand that generates excitement, reflects the values of the community, and includes a strategy on how to grow the future of the new look.

“The end goal is to provide something that unifies us all together and brings everybody on the same page,” Bailey said. “But it also pushes us to a better outlook on the future—where we want to go.”

In the next two weeks, a new webpage with a QR code will be launched to provide a complete description of the project and its goals. The page will also include information about the past history of the brand and how it has evolved. On the page, residents can provide real-time feedback and input.

“This webpage will give you everything you need to know about the branding project, the “why” of what we’re doing, the past of our brand, and what we’re looking for in the future,” Bailey said. “Plus, there will be a variety of different surveys.”

Bailey said over the next few months his team will be listening to the public to develop the basic foundation of the new brand. Through the end of 2023, there will be other opportunities for the public to engage and provide input.

“We’re hoping to have everything done before the end of this year, and we have made really good headway,” Bailey said. “But, I would say this stage we are in is the most important.”

This effort is done completely by the Communications Department and within their budget. Bailey is using his experience, expertise, and staff to conduct public outreach and come up with the design. According to Bailey, this will be a quality yet cost-effective project.

“Other cities that have done rebrands have spent anywhere from $15,000 to $250,000 just doing logo research or making a logo, and we’re not doing that,” Bailey said. “We’re doing that in house with my experts on my team.”

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