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Branding St. Louis

For any community to grow and prosper, it’s important to open the door to new business and business expansion, to retain the talent we have, and make it a place in which people are proud and happy to live and visit.  A key component to all of this is marketing and then delivering.  Join host Don Marsh as we talk about branding St. Louis.


Brian Hall, Chief Marketing Officer, St. Louis Convention and Visitors Commission

Tara Pham, founding member of the Brain Drain Collective

Mack Bradley, media strategist and President of StandPoint Public Affairs

Matt Seilback, co-owner of Anastasis Films, co-creator of the video, “Here is St. Louis”

Show Highlights

The discussion about the negative and positive aspects of St. Louis was wide-ranging as were ideas for creating a slogan for the city.  Brian Hall pointed to the immense opportunity to use marketing campaigns to convince Americans that there are some really interesting things happening in the city.  The guests also talked about the varying perceptions of those who live in the city versus the people who visit. 

"I find it a really interesting dichotomy that when I look at attitudes and perceptions of our research of those people who travel here and have a great time, they’re actually oftentimes superior to our own residents’ attitudes and perceptions concerning what they have here right here in front of them,” said Hall.

Tara Pham said, “I think St. Louis often brands itself relative to other things instead of looking at all of the amazing things we have here.”  Mack Bradley noted, “I think it’s important the brand of St. Louis embraces everyone who lives around the region.  If you’re Ballwin for example, the brand of your city of Ballwin should fit nicely under the regional brand of St. Louis.”

We had a lot of interaction with listeners calling-in and through Facebook and Twitter who submitted their ideas and thoughts about branding St. Louis.  The conversation is continuing on Twitter by using the hashtag #brandingSTL.  Here is just a small sample. 

“The smallest town of 318k you'll ever visit” “If you're bored in St. Louis, it's your fault” “St. Louis... It's a Great Place to Start" "Kind of close to Chicago, lots of free stuff and baseball” “Intellectual and medical capital of Midwest” “Art. Music. Beer." “Come see what's beyond the Arch” “S-T-L the only three letters Chuck Norris fears.”

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Alex is the executive producer of "St. Louis on the Air" at St. Louis Public Radio.
Mary Edwards is a producer for St. Louis Public Radio's broadcast program, "St. Louis Symphony."
Don Marsh served as host of St. Louis Public Radio’s “St. Louis on the Air" from 2005 to 2019, bringing discussions of significant topics to listeners' ears at noon Monday through Friday. Don has been an active journalist for 58 years in print, radio and television. He has won 12 Regional Emmy Awards for writing, reporting, and producing. He is the recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, was inducted into the St. Louis Media Hall of Fame in 2013, and named “Media Person of the Year” by the St. Louis Press Club in 2015. He has published three books: his most recent, “Coming of Age, Liver Spots and All: A Humorous Look at the Wonders of Getting Old,” “Flash Frames: Journey of a Journeyman Journalist” and “How to be Rude (Politely).” He holds an honorary Doctor of Arts and Letters degree from the University of Missouri-St. Louis.