Retire the harvester?: Plano city officials seek rebrand

Council to hear from creative agency later this month on potential changes to city’s website, logo and marketing strategy

The Plano City Council will hear from a creative agency later this month as officials hope to hire someone to help them better promote the city to new businesses.

A city community development committee has been in talks to redo its website and logo in addition to developing a marketing strategy in a bid to cast aside Plano’s rural image. With many wanting to push Plano as a city with new tech industries, some aldermen said the current logo that features an historic farm harvester lacks relevance in the 21st century.

“Do we want our city to be recognized as being in 1854, or do we want our city to be recognized as being in today?” asked Alderman John Fawver, head of the community development committee, during a meeting Thursday, June 3.

Another impetus for rebranding talks was too many inconsistencies in things like Plano’s website. Mayor Mike Rennels, who said he had encouraged the discussions, added that the city currently used multiple shades of purple, mismatched fonts and different logos.

After hearing from two firms, alderman agreed in the meeting to have DeKalb firm OC Creative present a branding approach to other officials at a committee of the whole meeting on Monday, June 14.

As of now there’s no hard dollar amount on a potential contract, yet officials said a $4,000 per month retainer with the firm would be money well spent compared to hiring a part-time employee to handle marketing.

Though the rebranding plan isn’t free, aldermen said they want to convince the community there is a “why” in spending funds on marketing.

“We want to grow the community and quite frankly take the tax burden off the citizens, and we do that by bringing business here,” Fawver said. “To do that we have to be recognizable. We have to be professional, and we have to appear as though we are moving forward.”

Lucas Robinson

Lucas Robinson covers politics, courts, schools and the pandemic in Kendall County and Yorkville for Shaw Media. His work has previously appeared in the Chicago Reader, the Buenos Aires Times, Open Secrets and USAToday. He grew up in Muncie, Indiana.