Hey – you all know that I love my beloved Kansas City, don’t you?
Born and raised here, it’s been called home for all of my 39 years. My family is here, my friends are here, my community is here, and most of all, I just flat out love it here.
This post is really about marketing gone bad rather than a screw up on the part of Kansas City.
Our city is getting ready for one of the biggest exposures of its career. The Major League Baseball ALL STAR GAME is at Kauffman Stadium right here in Kansas City next Tuesday night, with festivities starting this week and going on for the next week. It’s really going to be an amazing week to be a Kansas Citian. I’m especially excited to live downtown and be able to see all the action – people in the restaurants, bars, the Power and Light District, the hotels are full, and our city is going to have some awesome coverage the next week.
I know that the city itself, as well as the Mayors office, the Kansas City Royals, Kauffman Stadium, the Visitors Bureau and everyone that calls this place home has spent a long time preparing for this awesome event. You also might know and recall that I love baseball, so to have baseballs biggest mid-season game right here, just 10 minutes from where I live, is pretty dang exciting.
Last week, when I was driving home, I snapped this photo, not really knowing what it was. It appeared as though someone had painted something on the intersection just a few blocks from where I live. Check it out. Do you know what it is?
I really had no idea, but as I drove “over” it, I could somewhat make out a baseball, but certainly not any of the words. Oh, and I could also see visible black tire marks over the “paint”… Hmmm.
Just today, when I was driving home from the airport, I noticed similar paintings in other main intersections in Downtown KC. Very hard to see them, or read what they said. I figured I would head back to the one that I took the photo of on Broadway and Southwest Boulevard. As I came down the hill passing Town Topic, it was really the same image – completely invisible to what it said or what the design was – exactly what I saw the other night – and what I saw on Broadway closer to Bartle Hall. What were these people thinking? How much did our city pay for this? What is the use for putting all this effort to put these marketing stickers on the street if you cannot easily read them from behind the wheel of your car? I mean, it’s not like everyone in the world has a helicopter, or an office on the 8th floor?!
Marketing messages need to be targeted, usually to the masses. You know, its a good idea. But it was poorly thought out, poorly researched, and poorly executed. And a complete waste of money. Oh, and somewhat making our town, on a very important week, at least to me, a student of marketing, look like a joke. Here is what I saw today – these photos were taken FROM MY CAR, and completely illegible:
It literally too me to park my car on the street by Town Topic, walk down the hill, press the crosswalk button, and walk 1/2 way through the intersection AND about 5 feet out of the “crosswalk” to snap this picture, which allows you to see what the messaging really is:
What does it say?
WE ARE FANATICS. Join in #KC.
Great message, but no one will see it.
Yes, we are fanatics. I’m not so sure we are about the proper execution of this marketing messaging campaign that is all over Kansas City right now. Do you agree or am I barking for no reason?
The question and the moral of the story really is this: In your business, organization, or effort – is your marketing message EASY for your target to see, read and understand? If its not, is it even worth it? Or is it?
Happy Weekend, Go National League, and YES, I still love you with all of my heart, Kansas City.