Open Streets 704
A Day of Car(e) Free Streets
Attract a crowd to a first-ever “open streets” event in Charlotte. To see the first of this series of events to reality would require the cooperation from the City, County, parks, volunteers, not-for-profit partners, public safety, and transportation folks, as well as buy-in from the neighborhoods where the event would take place. Oh, and did we mention that most folks had never even heard of such a thing as “open streets?”
Forget everything you think you know about getting a whole lot of people and their wide-ranging ideas together around one very big table. We’ve done quite a bit of work with government and policy folks, but Open Streets 704 raised the bar on crossover cooperation. But, this big creative group was now tasked with producing, programming, and promoting a first-time event with just a few months lead time.
Like similar events all over the country, the work group wanted the marketing for this event – this movement, if you will – to be easily understood and uniquely Charlotte. Capitalizing on the popularity of the Queen City’s native zip code, we designed a sweet and simple brand name that was immediately embraced: Open Streets 704.
But what good is a brand if no one knows about it? We needed a website, logos, artwork, content, FAQ’s, direct mail pieces, and such. t-shirts and other event SWAG to get the word out. We needed social media content ASAP. We needed talking points for public meetings. The list was long. This was, in every sense, a start-up.
We knew we’d need multiple touches, particularly along the 3-mile event route, if folks were ever going to recognize the brand, much less participate. Our plan included GeoNotify (robo-calls) to businesses and residents in the event footprint, a direct mail campaign, some “traditional” advertising, and a very heavy social media presence.
There were neighborhood meetings and even a pre-event “pep rally,” if you will, for friends and influencers. There we popped the question, “what would YOU do with open streets?” Their answers and the party pics became the backbone of the marketing and the explanation of the event. The results? More than 10,000 people came out to play, ride, walk, dance, and connect with each other for the day. We can’t take credit for getting them out there, but post-even surveys show most of them heard about Open Streets 704 through our social media marketing. And that audience is STILL active in the movement and interested in the events, making Open Streets 704 viable – and valuable – for potential sponsors.
What they said:
“Their professionalism, passion and commitment to the vision of Open Streets 704 is outstanding. They have exceeded my expectation and created a brand and message that reflects the vision of Open Streets 704. The confidence I have in Well-Run Media to create all aspects of the marketing campaign is refreshing! Every directive has been on point and I look forward our continued work together. Well done Well-Run Media!”
— Al Bangoura; Recreation Superintendent, Mecklenburg County Park and Rec
“The huge success of our Open Streets 704 program is largely due to the awesome folks at Well-Run Media. They took us from zero to an event with 10,000 people and online reach of 100,000 in a matter of months! Their enthusiasm and creativity is exactly what we needed to support the spirit of Open Streets 704.”
— Scott Curry; Pedestrian Program Manager, City of Charlotte