After a 5-week Request for Proposal selection process conducted by Downtown SLC Presents, Love Communications, rose to the top by being awarded Agency of Record for the Cultural Core initiative.
This long-term endeavor is kindled by a funding commitment from Salt Lake County and Salt Lake City for the implementation of an action plan to develop and support downtown Salt Lake’s burgeoning arts & culture district.
The four pillars of focus for Cultural Core are to establish: programming, promotions, place-making, and partnerships – all in support of local artists and art organizations, and the cultural enrichment and economic boon they bring to a vibrant city. Love Communications, a full-service advertising, digital and public relations firm, will approach the first phase of the action plan by developing an authentic name and identity, and generating statewide and national awareness around the new brand.
The Cultural Core action plan for which Love was selected, is being managed and executed by Downtown SLC Presents, a subsidiary of Downtown Alliance. The nonprofit arm was founded in 1996 to broaden and deepen the public’s appreciation for the visual and performing arts. The Cultural Core is governed by an advisory body, the Salt Lake Budget Committee, comprised of members appointed by the City and County Council.
Love Communications, established in 1999, was selected based on the firm’s extensive expertise working with some of Utah’s most notable civic and tourism organizations, including Visit Salt Lake, a rebrand for the City of Sandy, and multiple campaigns for Salt Lake and Kane Counties. Additionally, Love has a wealth of experience developing and managing several recognizable brands, including GOED, SLC Airport, RC Willey, Utah’s Life Elevated, Google Fiber, and Zion Forever Project, among others.
“Building and promoting an identity that highlights and supports the incredible arts and culture in our urban center is a career highlight for me, and everyone at Love,” said Tom Love, president of Love Communications. “Our work on this important initiative will become part of our city’s legacy. We want people coming from near and far, to appreciate and experience the rich culture that’s already here, as well as the talent that’s yet to come.”
The first phase of implementing the action plan includes the development of a brand identity guided by a brand audit that revealed years of survey results, and community and stakeholder input. The new brand, including a name and logo, will be unveiled in late spring through promotional efforts and partnership engagement among local artists, downtown businesses, and performing and visual arts organizations. Simultaneously, plans are being developed and activated to initiate experiential programming and place-making that ensures the Core is inclusive, welcoming, and embraced by all.
“This represents an unprecedented funding commitment from city and county governments, to build diverse audiences, support artistic partners, and create a distinct sense of place,” said Jason Mathis, executive director, Downtown Alliance. “Love Communications is a proven partner to help us deliver this important cultural mission and help local artists and arts organizations thrive.”
In 2010, the City and County of Salt Lake established a taxing district to provide a reliable revenue source for a 20-year period. This district defines the geographic area that makes up the Cultural Core.