Stockton, California—Visit Stockton, the destination marketing organization for Stockton, California, has launched a bold and defiant brand campaign for the city and surrounding region. Themed #StocktonTrue, the campaign owns the city’s adversity and lets people know, despite the negative perception of the city, Stockton is on the rise.
Located along the California Delta, Stockton enjoys refreshing delta breezes, a vibrant waterfront, a rich farm-to-table scene and, the campaign argues, an unjust mountain of negativity. Forbes.com once ran an article about Stockton with the headline, “One of the most miserable cities in America just got more miserable.” The article alluded to the national financial crisis years ago where bankruptcy threatened to overshadow all the positive aspects of the city. “Every city has challenges, but it is what you do in the face of those challenges that matters. We have chosen to positively react to those who try to bring us down with what they say. Stocktonians are creative, resilient, and have pride for their city. The #StocktonTrue campaign embodies who we are,” said Visit Stockton’s CEO, Wes Rhea.
Visit Stockton, whose mission it is to promote the city as a tourist destination, has faced serious branding challenges for many reasons. As Rhea put it, “Situated in a destination rich area of Northern California, where travelers find themselves drawn to places like San Francisco and Yosemite, we have been known in the past as a city you pass on the way to your destination. Our goal has been to engage with travelers and educate them on all that Stockton has to offer.”
Visit Stockton decided to tackle these problems head-on with the help of FourthIdea, a branding and creative firm specializing in travel and hospitality advertising, and Tempest, an integrated digital marketing agency which has scores of clients in the destination marketing space. From their collective efforts a new brand, website, and digital campaign was launched that daringly puts all the negative reviews the city had received front and center with impactful imagery that defies the preconceived notions some still hold about Stockton. “Great campaigns are borne of clients that aren’t faint of heart—Stockton is a city that has a lot of heart, soul and guts,” said Thomas Mooney, CEO and Executive Creative Director of FourthIdea. The campaign theme #StocktonTrue, is designed to become a rallying cry for people who believe in the resurgence of this proud city.
About Visit Stockton
Visit Stockton is the official destination marketing organization for Stockton, California. Founded in 1979 as a 501(c)6, non-profit corporation, the bureau’s mission is to promote Stockton by increasing the awareness and enhancing the image of the city’s diverse cultural, historical and recreational assets. Visit Stockton is funded in partnership with local hotel properties through the Stockton Tourism Business Improvement District. More information can be found at visitstockton.org or by texting 877.778.6258.
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