Gone But Not Forgotten

Hello, you've landed on DATA eh? - Open Data Toronto's original blog space for data discussions. This is not an active blog at the moment but legacy posts are still here. Have a read ... you can still provide comments.

Monday, July 19, 2010

OK what does branding mean?

NOTE: This is content from the web re:Brand posts going back to November 2010. We have kept the re:Brand posts as a legacy archive but, on a go forward basis as of October, 2011, the new DATA eh? content takes over this space.

These just in from our Comments Wall: 
I was just on the City's website/webpage for Edwards Gardens.....ARE YOU KIDDING? That is the most spartan and pathetic 'description' for a civic attraction that I've ever seen and I have lived or visited from coast-to-coast. Do you not want people to visit this wonderful space? In fact, I found most of the 'information' on the City's website severely lacking, unimaginative, and just plain bland.  
AND ...
It is obviously too late. In the future, try first to understand what "branding" means. So far, there is no "branding" here.
To the first - this is the kind of comment relating to writing we've been asking about.  In some ways, when we write with a bit more pizazz there is a fear of criticism but I gather rather than a consistent listing this person wants more! We could definitely put some more meat on information like this - maybe you'd like to try adding your own descriptions - a great place for a Garden Wall perhaps?

(Assumption the person was looking at: http://www.toronto.ca/parks/parks_gardens/edwardsgdns.htm).

To the second - I would argue it's never too late.  The web re:Brand hasn't got a finite point exactly.  I mean, we are not just going to present pages and say we are done without a fair bit of due diligence.  So, perhaps you could say: "it's taking a while"!  I would also challenge that we don't know what "branding" means.  In fact the comment tells us a lot about our current brand.  So, maybe as we move along with the outcomes, a better brand - something we can all be real proud about - will become more evident.

Fill in the blanks:

toronto.ca is to Toronto as  ________ is to __________

Make a connection and tell us what our web means to you now or what you'd like it to mean to you in the future.

Bookmark and Share


Patrick said...

Hmmm... I like this! I'll be back later with a comment -- Don't want to be late for the Bon Jovi concert, after all...

Keith from the TO web re:Brand team said...

@Patrick - I wonder what Bon Jovi would think of toronto.ca? Seriously, I've often thought we should approach celebrities and see if they've ever surfed our pages and, if they have, and were willing, we'd get them to do an ID for us - something like "Hi, I'm (Mr. celebrity) and I surf toronto.ca" (video clips) - just a way to get more energy and impact. Maybe users would see that as too blatant marketing but I think it would be interesting to have that kind of sanction. You could extend that to a series of interviews perhaps with these people and ask their thoughts as "visitors". Just saying ...

Glendaajackson said...

This type of brands are all cool. That would be interesting stuff here. i really enjoyed it to read.


Michael Holloway said...


"toronto.ca is to Toronto as ________ is to __________"

Good idea.

But, I think connectivity will define this place better than a suggestion box type approach.

I think you'll define your brand by inviting more connections in from where you're being branded right now, in the local community web sites, etc..

(..it's not good - the appearance of transparency is key I think. Now, many have created a way of using technology to better hide and obfuscate rather than connect, it's popular amongst neophytes to do this [it's a function of their fear and ignorance i think] - but it is doomed to failure as social networking technology gets better and better.)

Perhaps create spaces where issues on the councils agenda can be discussed, connections created... become a hub that inspires new conversations/links. This will quickly create a brand that different departments can then mirror back through their various portals - thus allowing the city an opportunity to define/refine the emerging brand.

- making it up as I go along... -

Michael Holloway

Keith from the TO web re:Brand team said...

@Michael Holloway - challenging comments - thanks and indeed I think most of us are "making it up as (we) go along" but that might be a good thing! Part of our movement is for toronto.ca content providers to do some exploring around connectivity means and opportunities and then engage, engage, engage.

Michael Holloway said...

Right on Kieth. I'm really happy to have found the blog - great work.