Redhead Creative Consultancy and Mount Clemens’ branding committee have been meeting over the summer, developing a complete branding packet. The packet was presented at a special Mount Clemens City Commission meeting Aug. 30.

Redhead Creative Consultancy and Mount Clemens’ branding committee have been meeting over the summer, developing a complete branding packet. The packet was presented at a special Mount Clemens City Commission meeting Aug. 30.

File photo by Deb Jacques


A look at Mount Clemens’ branding project

By: Alex Szwarc | Mount Clemens - Clinton - Harrison Journal | Published September 8, 2021

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MOUNT CLEMENS — A new look and feel could be coming to Mount Clemens.

In February, Mount Clemens approved a new branding project for the city of Mount Clemens.

Redhead Design Studio was unanimously approved as the city’s branding firm. Since then, Redhead has changed its name to Redhead Creative Consultancy.

Redhead specializes in brand strategy and marketing for social change by helping mission-led organizations convert skeptics and change cultural behaviors. Staff members like a content director, design director, creative director and account services director are the core team for the project.  

Last month, City Manager Don Johnson said the original plan was to do more focus-group type meetings, but COVID-19 restrictions led to the city conducting a massive survey.

“The main focus was to identify what people really felt about Mount Clemens and what they felt was important,” Johnson said. “The key elements that came out of it were history, the river and the arts scene.”

Redhead launched a community survey in the spring, which attracted nearly 1,100 responses. The survey had 15 questions to gather resident and visitor perceptions of the city.

“Our population of interest was residents of Mount Clemens, persons who work in Mount Clemens, and visitors to the city,” Johnson said. “Out of our 1,096 survey takers, 65% identified themselves as residents of the city.”

Mount Clemens Mayor Laura Kropp said the survey included questions like what comes to mind when people think of Mount Clemens and what folks love most about the city.

“Since it was an online survey, people didn’t hold back,” she commented. “They were brutally honest, and we had to come to terms with looking at the positive, which there were many, and the negative perceptions of Mount Clemens and how we can address those.”

Kropp further examined in the responses that folks have an affinity and deep sense of Mount Clemens history.

“The connection to the river flowing through the city was really surprising to me,” she said. “People feel very connected to that.”

Kropp said Redhead and the city’s six-member branding committee have been meeting over the summer, developing a complete branding packet.

The committee consists of a few city employees, the Mount Clemens Library director, the executive director of the Anton Art Center, and a Macomb County representative.

The packet was presented at a special Mount Clemens City Commission work session  Aug. 30.

At the session, elements of the brand and the proposed logo were discussed. That was the first time the brand was formally presented to the commission and the public.

Redhead Principal and Creative Director Jennifer Estill said the project included the residential survey and creative work and exploration.

“Everyone loves downtown and the river, the art and the people,” she said. “Residents of Mount Clemens love their history and don’t want it to get lost in this process.”

Estill added that creative thinking is applied to visual aspects of the brand, like a logo and mascot.

“We also do a brand platform, which helps to make sure that mission, vision, values, value proposition and more are written and accurately reflect the place we are helping to brand,” she said. “We don’t try to change who someone is; we try to uncover who they are and make it cohesive, usable and functional.”

Kropp said there’s not an end date to utilizing Redhead’s services. Rather, it’s project-based and Redhead will see the city through the entire process.

“After the commission approves the package, they will help us implement the rollout of the branding,” Kropp said.

The hope is to reveal it to the public as an improved package at the Mount Clemens State of the City address Sept. 24.

Once the branding project is complete, Kropp said new city signage will be rolled out and a new city website will be introduced. Not all signage will be changed at the same time, the mayor said, factoring in cost.

“We want the brand reflected in everything we do,” she said. “Like new letterhead and new business cards. We have a new mascot that will be rolled out.”

Johnson anticipates the City Commission will vote on adopting the brand, logo, new city seal, mascot and more at its Sept. 7 meeting, which takes place after press time.

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