This year my wife (who is also my business partner with 'G-G's Gallery & Gifts' ) and I decided to forgo our usual inclination to be 'non-joiners' -we are fiercely independent thinkers and for the most part this has worked to our advantage- by taking out a membership in our local business association, Watrous-Manitou Marketing Association.
Several years ago I was hired to design the association's logo. It appears that more and more I am the 'go-to guy' for creative design in these parts. Here's the logo that I came up with:
It has morphed a bit over the years but the concept remains intact. My idea for the logo was to show the reflecting of the 'W' of Watrous to the 'M' of Manitou...seeing as how Manitou Beach is famous for the 'Healing Waters' of Little Manitou Lake and after all is said and done, it is the lake itself that is our #1 attraction for the thousands of visitors every year. So, it only makes sense that the lake should be front and center. That is pretty much non-negotiable in my mind and the majority of stakeholders are in agreement. So far so good.
One of the perks of membership in the association is a special discounted rate for a full-color ad in the 'Visitor Guide', which is a 'Readers' Digest' format glossy magazine that is circulated to all of the tourist booths in Western Canada as well as in all of the participating businesses. This year, we are publishing 17,000 copies so it will enjoy fairly significant penetration into the collective consciousness of a wide readership.
Doesn't that sound like a good opportunity for a young business enterprise such as 'G-G's Gallery & Gifts' ?
We thought so. Yesterday I sat down and designed a half-page ad for the Visitors' Guide. It was a group effort. I posted several rough drafts on Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+ in the hope that I might get some valuable feedback. Turns out this is exactly what happened. About a dozen friends and colleagues chimed in with their tips and advice which I gratefully took into consideration. The result was very interesting!
Here is the final design after about seven drafts:
You know what they say..."Ya gotta spend money to make money".
I bet this ad will work out for us in the future, that's what it's all about. Designing for the future.