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WASTE WATCH: The cost of rebranding Pensacola

Updated: Monday, November 18 2013, 08:22 PM CST
WASTE WATCH: The cost of rebranding Pensacola story image
What's in a name? Or a logo? Or slogan?
Many times, there's a lot of time and money invested in the brands and promotions used by our governments and other entities funded in part by tax dollars.

In advertising, it's all about creating a brand.
Coke...Mcdonald's...Channel Three News.

But even the best brands change their look -- and their slogans -- from time to time.
Sometimes it works -- sometimes not so much -- remember "New Coke"?

Lately, it seems like lots of cities, government entities and businesses are climbing on the re-branding bandwagon -- with your tax dollars hanging in the balance.

It was supposed to be everywhere -- on city vehicles -- water towers -- all over the place.
You can still see it -- if you're looking hard enough -- but the campaign seems to have fizzled...

REPORTER "Do you know what the slogan is for the city of Pensacola?"
LADY "(Laughs)...No."
REPORTER "Do you know what the slogan is for the city of Pensacola?"
HUDSON SAULS "Ah, the city of Five Flags?
REPORTER "If I told you they've changed it?"
SAULS "Oh, um, yes. The upside of Florida?"
REPORTER "Very good. Very good."

According to the City of Pensacola -- more than 100,000 dollars was paid to an advertising agency out of Tallahassee for the new city slogan.

A three-year, 1.4 million dollar contract was cancelled by Mayor Ashton Hayward -- but not until the city spent hundreds of thousands of dollars marketing the slogan, the airport and port -- and a name change for Pensacola Energy.

A name change that director Don Suarez feels is part of a bigger picture.
Don Suarez/Director, Pensacola Energy
"It's one indication of the emergence of Pensacola as a real economic development center, and one that I think is a trend to our future."

Escambia County has been looking to sell off the Pensacola Civic Center -- a building they fund each year with bed tax dollars from local hotels and condos.

The building recently changed it's name -- a rebranding that doesn't seem to be catching on...

REPORTER "A building where they have concerts and sporting events. What's the name of that building?"
DUDE "The Civic Center."
REPORTER "It's got a new name. Have you heard the new name?"
DUDE "I should know that too, because I just bid on some work over there."
REPORTER "If I told you it's the Pensacola Bay Center, does that strike a bell?"
DUDE "Uh, I love that. Yeah. Okay."

Other entities like the Emerald Coast Utilities Authority and the Greater Pensacola Chamber of Commerce have changed their look in recent years -- changes that always come with a financial cost.

But it's part of telling a consistent story about a growing area to people across the country...

Dr. Brendan Kelly/UWF
"Which is different than the telling the story of all the different organizations to those who live here. So I do think there is an effort about to have greater coordination. I think it's beneficial for the community."

Like the Florida weather -- if you don't like the new logos and slogans -- just wait a little while -- they're bound to change.

With your Waste Watch report, Will Kennedy, Channel Three News.
If you have an idea for a Waste Watch report, head over to weartv.com and click on the Waste Watch tab and tell us about it.

WASTE WATCH: The cost of rebranding Pensacola
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