Lansing, Michigan was suffering from low self-esteem. Lost manufacturing jobs and a struggling economy had residents down on their town. To be successful, Lansing’s brand had to ring true to residents, even before it was rolled out to tourists. If the people who live in a place don’t believe in their city, no one else will either.
North Star research found that Lansing is actually the literal and figurative heart of Michigan. Centrally located in “the middle of the mitt,” Lansing is both the state capital and home of Michigan State University. It is also home to a surprising number of “creative class” citizens and a corresponding creative culture. Understanding all this capital city had to offer was key to shifting attitudes from pessimism to pride.
With the goal of lightening moods and attitudes, the Lansing logo is lighthearted, featuring a mitt with the city’s central location predominantly noted. The line “Where culture and creativity come together” establishes Lansing not only as the geographic center of the state but as the cultural and economic center of the state as well. A campaign rolling out the brand featured all kinds of people – from everyday citizens to well-known celebrities – pointing to the center of their palms (mitt) while talking about Lansing.