Connecticut will ask families and businesses to “Make It Here,” as part of a new branding and marketing campaign launched alongside a new logo Tuesday by members of Gov. Ned Lamont’s administration.
The “Make It Here” campaign will begin with a $1 million initial ad buy and will replace “Still Revolutionary,” a marketing effort steeped in state history and launched more than a decade ago under former Gov. Dannel Malloy’s administration. The earlier campaign has been functionally retired since 2019.
During a televised press conference in Bristol, Lamont said the new brand sought to capture a more modern representation of Connecticut’s culture and economy.
“This is sorta changing a little bit of the impression of what maybe had [been] a little stayed Connecticut from yesteryear,” Lamont said. “Maybe they think our economy is not as state-of-the-art and a little bit stayed, which is so wrong and that’s what this message is all about.”
Members of Lamont’s Department of Economic and Community Development team showed a 60-second advertisement video, which referenced Connecticut’s defense sector manufacturers, “the country’s best pizza,” and its college basketball victories.
“This small state is one of the best places on earth to build a family, a business, a home,” the ad’s narrator said.
The American flag-inspired Connecticut logo utilized during the “Still Revolutionary” campaign will also be retired. In its place is a new symbol: a stylized and circular letter “C,” whose negative space appears to be a letter “T.”
Anthony Anthony, the state’s chief marketing officer, said that residents and businesses could seek approval to personalize the logo.
During the event, state officials summarized the results of a marketing survey which found residents reporting positive feelings about Connecticut as a place to live, work and play but found only about half of respondents proud of the state and only 21% reporting they would recommend the state to others.
Department of Economic and Community Development Commissioner Alexandra Daum said state officials faced an “uphill battle against some negative perception.”
“We don’t get it,” Daum said of those negative perceptions. “There’s a gap there. We don’t know why people are not as likely to recommend Connecticut as we really believe they should be given the amazing quality of life and business environment here.”
Anthony said the new marketing campaign, developed by Glastonbury-based agency Cronin, was meant to underscore a productive state identity and communicate that Connecticut was a state of creators and innovators.
“Connecticut is a place where you can make it,” Anthony said. “This is your home; this is where you should lay down roots, and this is where you can find success whether that’s starting a business, finding a meaningful career or inventing some amazing product that’s going to make you a billionaire.”
State officials said the new campaign would run alongside Connecticut’s “Find Your Vibe” tourism campaign, launched last year.
All told, the new campaign has cost $1.817 million, according to Anthony. The new marketing effort has so far been funded by federal American Rescue Plan Act dollars and will continue to be funded by grants from the federal Economic Development Administration, he said.
Initially, the “Make It Here” campaign will include spots on billboards, Metro-North, and Bradley International Airport as well as online ads, Anthony said. Next year, the department plans to broaden the campaign by spending at least another $1 million in markets outside of Connecticut including New York, Anthony said.