Last week’s rollout of a new logo and motto is just the beginning of the Town of Fuquay-Varina’s rebranding process.
The town will come out with a redesigned flag and may redesign the official town seal, said spokeswoman Susan Weis.
She said that work, plus the application of the rebranding, will likely take about a year. That includes buying new shirts, business cards and hats, plus work like repainting water towers and town vehicles or installing signs.
Features for the redesigned website and apps are still in the works. Weis said those likely will be discussed more in-depth as the town embarks on a further redesign of its website.
The rebranding is being done for $95,000 by Clean Design, a Raleigh firm.
The town revealed its new brand to the public Dec. 2, with a focus on a new logo and motto. The town’s logo is no longer the simple green and gold “FV” that has been used since 1985. The new logo spells out the Fuquay-Varina name in green and blue dashes reminiscent of a digital array. The logo also incorporates two triangles above the town name, which officials said “represents two towns coming together and conveys the sense of forward movement, while the fresh colors signal it’s a new day in Fuquay-Varina.”
“We’ve got a lot of young people,” Mayor John Byrne said. “Our demographic is changing, and we're trying to modernize, look to the future.”
The new motto is “A dash more” – a play on the town’s hyphenated name that also is meant to give the sense that there’s a little something extra in the fast-growing town.
Clean Design, who has worked with the cities of s Boone and Wilmington, as well as Lenovo and Red Hat, solicited public input throughout the process. An online survey, which garnered 1,300 responses, helped inform the rebranding of the town, as did conversations with local politicians and business leaders.
Byrne said the rebranding is just a formal way of helping the town’s messaging match up with its reputation. The town clearly has changed from a rural, tobacco farming community to a suburban bedroom community for skilled industries, Byrne said.
“Now, with our growth, our community is changing pretty dramatically,” he said. “You feel it. You really get a sense of your town at events and everything, and there was a sense that our community was changing, or had changed. And we wanted to become who we are.”
But branding, Byrne said, is more than just a motto, logo, flag or mission statement. While those are all key parts of a brand, he said, there are other more organic ways that Fuquay-Varina’s brand has evolved over time.
A century ago, the area was a tourist destination – home to the Fuquay mineral springs, with their proported medical benefits. As medicine gravitated towards science and away from folklore, the springs lost their appeal, and tobacco took over as the town’s defining factor.
Tobacco warehouses and barns still dot the local landscape, but most are now abandoned or used for other purposes.
Now, manufacturing and technology define the town. Many residents commute to RTP for work, but there is also a nascent entreprenuerial scene evident in new coworking and business start-up programs, such as InnovateF-V.
Byrne said the increasingly lively downtown scene is also a key part of Fuquay-Varina’s changing reputation, whether it’s the craft breweries boosting nightlife, or the street fairs that draw crowds of all ages.
As the town grows, it will draw more widespread interest, which will help its brand even more. He pointed to Fuquay-Varina landing the WRAL Freedom Ballon Fest as one example. Organizers announced last month they would move the hot air balloon festival, to be held over Memorial Day weekend, to Fuquay-Varina instead of previous host locations in Zebulon and North Raleigh.
Local residents have shown an interest in following what’s going on in their town. Fuquay-Varina’s official Facebook page, for instance, has about 7,000 “likes” – twice as many as Apex or Raleigh, and the biggest social media presence of any of the towns and cities in Wake County.
Byrne said residents have given him and other town officials positive feedback on the new branding effort.
“It’s gathering steam,” he said, “It’s something that people are very excited about. I like the ‘A dash more.’ It makes you think a little bit.”
Doran: 919-460-2604; Twitter: @will_doran