Town of Sylvan Lake

  • Branding
  • Campaigns
Sylvan Lake is a centrally-located community in Alberta, equidistant from Calgary and Edmonton. Near two large centres, Sylvan Lake offers a relaxed, lakeside lifestyle and friendly community.

Sylvan Lake is actively facilitating business opportunities and encouraging professionals to locate there. The Town’s original logotype described a lakeside tourist destination more than it did a diverse, thriving community.

The goals for the rebrand of Sylvan Lake were to: position the Town as an ideal year-round location for business and tourism in Central Alberta; stimulate economic growth through diversification and connecting the neighbourhoods (lakefront, downtown and industrial lands); and inspire pride and promote community involvement among residents and businesses.

The Town of Sylvan Lake is actively facilitating business opportunities and encouraging professionals to locate there. The Town’s original logotype described a lakeside tourist destination more than it did a diverse, thriving community. Place branding is about finding the authentic voice of the future. Ion first looked at Sylvan Lake’s existing branding and brand communications as well as competitive communities in Alberta and the rest of Canada. We then facilitated two workshops in Sylvan Lake aimed at understanding the views of residents, businesses and employees around the future of the Town. The participants represented all of these groups, working together. The exercises included work on semantics and storytelling as tools to help participants express what they hoped to see.

Research

Our work in place branding aims to bring the representation of a place closer to what stakeholders aspire for it to be. Place branding is about finding the authentic voice of the future. Ion first looked at Sylvan Lake’s existing branding and brand communications as well as competitive communities in Alberta and the rest of Canada.

We facilitated two workshops in Sylvan Lake aimed at understanding the views of residents, businesses and employees around the future of the Town. The participants represented all of these groups, working together. The exercises included work on semantics and storytelling as tools to help participants express what they hoped to see.

Sylvan Lake Workshop 1

Sylvan Lake Workshop 2

Brand story

Light dancing on the snow, bubbles in champagne, sunlight on shoulders, a campfire on a cool night. Sylvan Lake – Brilliant all year.

Strategy

Out of this work, came the words that the stakeholders wanted the new brand to represent. These formed the brand essence: Fun, Confident, Charming, Warm and Relaxed. The brand essence drives the language, colour, images, typography and voice of communications for Sylvan Lake. Drawing inspiration from the Sylvan Lake’s beloved lighthouse, the logo makes reference to the Town’s history while reflecting the modernity in its new growth and dynamic population. The typography provides a sense of history through the slab serifs, while the typeface’s modern cut creates a contemporary feel for the brand. Most importantly, this new brand identity reflects the Sylvan Lake that residents want their town feel like as it grows. Ion has developed a suite of brand tools for Sylvan Lake including the brand story, brand tone, key messages for each main audience group, and applications including signage and and print advertising. Ion is currently completing a new wayfinding project.

Cards

Letterhead

Folder

Banners

Brochure

Campaign Print

Campaign Direct Mail

Phone

The Results

“This brand Ion created is helping drive everything we do in Sylvan Lake now. We have a renewed understanding of who we are as a town and what we offer to our current and future residents, as well as businesses considering locating here,” says Vicki Kurz, Economic Development Officer for Town of Sylvan Lake. “We’re definitely attracting more interest in Sylvan Lake as a strategic location to build business in Alberta. People are noticing and the brand as it comes to life and folks have a clearer sense of the fantastic place they call home.”

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