The Walker County Brand: Background
In 2014, hundreds of our citizens attended Community Meetings, held in 8 different locations across the county — to tell our leaders what we loved about Walker County, what we wanted to see improved, and how we thought Walker County could be a better place to live and work.
During the course of those eight meetings you tasked your leaders with the development of a long-term strategic plan for the community. The resulting Plan for Walker County identified seven Priorities for our future.
Work Begins On The Brand Campaign
Behind the scenes, the Leadership Team for the Plan for Walker County (which includes representatives from all 14 of the county’s municipalities), began work on the seven Priorities. In mid 2015, one of the team’s committees initiated the project that represents the first giant step forward in our long-term plan: The development of a new brand for Walker County that genuinely reflects the spirit of our extraordinary community.
Exactly What Is A Brand?
If you’re asking yourself that question, You’re not alone. Simply put, a brand is what comes to mind when you think of a company, a product, or a community. It’s why, for instance, Apple can charge $1500 for a $750 computer. Because it’s an Apple. And why more people in the South drink Coke than Pepsi: Because it’s Coke.
Why Do We Need A Brand?
Simple: Because if we don’t define who we are, and what Walker County’s brand is, other people do it for us — and there’s no guarantee that they’ll define our brand the way we want it.
Where Did Our Brand Message Come From?
It came from the people of Walker County. During those community meetings, you gave us hundreds of pages worth of feedback on what’s good (and what’s not so good) about the place we call home.
Our Brand Message
After much deliberation, the Branding Committee reached agreement on a core message that, they felt, perfectly defined the Walker County brand — while also making a compelling case to folks considering Walker County as home for their families and/or businesses:
People here are pulling together and uniting to support a single Strategic Plan. And we’ve been uniting toward a common goal since 2013.
In short, we’re selling more than potential in Walker County. We’re selling a community that’s already coming together to do great things in so many different ways. All of which led to the line that, we believe (and we hope you agree) perfectly reflects that brand:
What Does That Line Mean On A Practical Level?
Let’s look at it word for word:
It’s about all of us working together. Think of everything we’ve already done. Then think about how we can get things done, moving forward, collaboratively and cooperatively.
It’s what Walker County is known for. Tell us we can’t do something, and we’ll prove to you that we can. Whether it’s attracting new industry, excelling in sports or building a better community.
That’s where our “Can” attitude turns into action.
Whatever it is, you name it. We can do it.
Here Are Just Three Things Walker County Can Do, And Does.
Here’s the most important thing remember: We Can Do That is more than just a catch-phrase. It starts with Community Support. And you sure did it Saturday, April 30th, during Walker County Day. Now comes the part where we put the brand into practice. And that’s where we can all impact Walker County’s brand — with positive attitudes, words and actions.
Look around you. Great things are happening in this community. For over two years, people in this community have pulled together behind our Strategic Plan initiative. The Walker County Lake project is in full swing. New businesses are coming to the area. Existing businesses are expanding. Bevill State is equipping our workforce to handle more quality jobs than ever before. And with the upcoming completion of I-22, it’s only going to get better.
Walker County Is All Of Us.
Ultimately, the success of our branding campaign, and our entire strategic plan, will be measured by how well it creates unity. Walker County is about all of us working together. And you know what? #WeCanDoThat!
Photo by Al Blanton.