Gonzales, California, is a little town with a very big heart.
The city’s government and school district have joined with residents and businesses to shape everything they do around children: policy, education, health care, mentoring, recreation — everything.
It has many, many parts, and its based on often complicated research into what works best in raising children.
Our mission was to turn it all into a simple, motivational message and build a campaign on it.
We came up with The Gonzales Way: “the way we raise happy, healthy, successful kids in Gonzales.” The Gonzales Way is based on three simple imperatives: Love, Care, Connect.
Immediately, it struck a chord — The Gonzales Way was adopted by the town even before we had gotten started on the campaign. We think that’s because it expressed what the people of Gonzales already believed in, what they already knew was special about their town.
For the visual identity, we started with a beloved local symbol: a ball-shaped water tower next to Highway 101. It’s seen mostly by people from other places, speeding through the Salinas Valley towards Los Angeles or San Francisco. But to people from Gonzales, it means home.
For the colors, we chose the green of the fields and a sunlight orange, which happened to match the colors of Gonzales High School.
Then we got to work creating campaign elements:
- Vibrantly colorful banners and signs to be place up and down Main St, at the entrances to town, and in other prominent locations.
- Video, animation, and photography.
- A website that serves as the hub for all Gonzales Way information and resources. Like many of our sites, it’s based on the Drupal content management system, and is designed to let Gonzales Way partners easily post their own content.
- Email newsletters.
- Content for social media and for the multimedia “KICK Kiosks” located around town.
- Collateral for events and other purposes.
- Training sessions for Gonzales Way partners.
The Gonzales Way has now been incorporated into everything the City does, becoming an “umbrella brand” for the community as a whole. And we are producing an ongoing series of “mini-campaigns” — using digital, print, and animation — you can see some examples below. Each expressing an aspect of The Gonzales Way, and together they are building understanding, commitment, and participation throughout the community.
Gonzales Way Website