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Is your location part of your brand?

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Do you use your location name in any part of your branding? Your town, region, or province? Depending on what you’re selling and to whom, incorporating a sense of place somewhere in your brand can be very appealing and lucrative. Some location names will be familiar to consumers, and others will sound exotic and intriguing.

Think about the Okanagan Valley. It’s a world-famous region known for its fine wines, fruit crops and associated products. The place name evokes an image of quality. All that marketing to build that region’s brand has already been done. Consider how you can tap into that with your company.

The Kootenays, the Fraser Valley, and Vancouver Island are some other areas known for agriculture profiles with different flavours of culture, landscape characteristics, and diverse experiences that your product and brand could associate with. In a consumer’s mind, they can envision what those areas mean to them from afar, or how they can support you locally.

Ever heard of Half Moon Bay? Christopher Norman Chocolates moved their operation to this remote spot on the Sunshine Coast and successfully promote their sophisticated chocolate products around the world from this romanticized location. 

Authentic Branding

Using a place name somewhere in your branding can often emphasize you and your product’s credibility and authenticity, perhaps tell a little of your unique story. Places can evoke emotions, memories, and curiosity, and your branding can nurture those feelings.

When Farm Food Drink has been in discussion with or worked on initiatives with large grocery, independent grocery, and distributors, most have reflected that BC food businesses don’t emphasize their location enough on labels and promotional material. They’ve commented that their customers want to know about and choose products because they are local and or BC based. Leveraging a local grocery can elevate your brand faster if you do it right.

At Farm Food Drink, we have worked with several clients who have embraced using location mentions in their branding. Here are just a few of the successful BC food companies’ examples:

Swan Valley Honey

The owners at Honey Bee Zen purchased the Swan Valley Honey company which had a long history as a strong locally recognized brand in the Creston Valley and beyond. The label on the honey product was designed to playfully show the owner’s red barn and hives in front of a recognizable local mountain scape in the background.

Upper Bench Winery & Creamer

In the heart of Okanagan wine country is the Naramata Bench, a geological area that defines the landscape near Penticton, and a name widely recognized in the wine world. The owners at Upper Bench Winery & Creamery embraced the Upper Bench name to clearly represent that they are in the heart of a world-class terroir resulting in award winning wines and creative cheeses.

Upper Bench portfolio

Yakiniku Sauces

With this Yakiniku Sauces brand project for labels and a website, there was a significant focus on linking Japanese tradition in both product and brand design with a proud connection to the owner’s local community of Kamloops. We boldly placed the Kamloops mention on the labels and that statement says it all.

Natural Pastures Cheese Company

Located in the Comox Valley on Vancouver Island, Natural Pastures is a successful enterprise that ships award-winning, creative cheeses across the country. We have a long-standing relationship with this inspiring team and admired how they emphasized their sense of place right on some of their product names:  Comox Brie, Courtenay Cheddar, and Pacific Parmesan. We love working with this playful brand.

Location Goes Beyond the Name

The name of a place certainly conjures different things of what can be used for a brand image, but an image or notion of a place can also demonstrate location. These clients did just that with their brands.

Slow Bottled Sunday

The fruit-based sauces from Slow Bottled Sunday are meant to represent a casual, fun, backyard BBQ experience. On this label project, we included the mention of ‘BC Grown Fruit’, but the images for each flavour are what really capture attention. They represent a simple lifestyle, some backyard or beachside fun with friends and neighbours.

Gnusanté – 52◦ North

Nothing spells out location stronger than a degree of Latitude. The team at Gnusanté in Vancouver make healthy beverages including a unique drink made from tapping Birch Sap in the Caribou region of northern BC. They call it 52◦ North. The location name is intriguing and the website and marketing copy expands on the feeling of remote and wild, clean air and expansive skies. The package label even has a photo of a white birch tree.

Who Do You Serve?

Farmers Markets and Food Hubs typically include their location in their name. This identifies their area of service. Including a place name for a market like, Abbotsford Farm & Country Market, tells local consumers that there’s good local food to be found here, but it’s also great to attract more Vendors to the market.  

The same goes for Food Hubs. A consumer is not necessarily going to be looking for a commercial kitchen or co-packing service, but Food Hubs are trying to attract local food producers and processors, as well as wholesalers, schools, and restaurants. Having a localized name can attract more interest.

South Island Food Hub

Besides the obvious location in the name, Farm Food Drink’s creative team also came up with a fun logo for the South Island Food Hub that depicts the recognizable shape of Vancouver Island as a carrot. This was a fun and exciting project and we were proud to support this important initiative at the height of the pandemic.

 Just contact us and we’ll start a conversation to see where you want to go with your business.

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