Let's admit it: in the past Winnipeg has been defined by harsh slogans, names and labels. It’s gone through the wringer when referenced in TV shows, movies and of course, on Twitter threads—all while still picking up accolades, like our latest, when we were named one of “The World’s 100 Greatest Places of 2021” by TIME magazine.
So what better time than the present to change the narrative? It’s time to have a story for Winnipeg, written and told by Winnipeggers.
Economic Development Winnipeg and Tourism Winnipeg are pleased to introduce Winnipeg: Made from what’s real.
At Tourism Winnipeg, we work hard to share our special city with the world. We do this by highlighting things like our world-class attractions, killer restaurant scene, intriguing architecture, inclusive and diverse community, and how we’re an ideal spot to host special events.
It’s an honour and pleasure that we take part in every day, and it’s one that we look forward to continuing with this new place brand that celebrates what’s real about our home at the centre of the continent.
Introducing: The place brand.
What is a place brand and why does Winnipeg need one?
A place brand helps get to the heart of who we are as a city. It helps Winnipeggers and those across the world understand clearly what our city is and what it represents. The place brand is showcased in every story that we share, putting into words the genuine and positive attributes that we feel and know about ourselves as a community.
What do we know to be true about our city?
Economic Development Winnipeg and Travel Manitoba worked with McKim.Sherpa to develop an overall creative approach to the new place brand. We collaborated with community partners including the City of Winnipeg and used information from research, surveys, workshops and focus groups with Winnipeggers to create a brand that would truly resonate with the community.
In partnership with Travel Manitoba’s Place Branding program, Probe Research Inc. was engaged to speak with Winnipeggers from diverse backgrounds across business, tourism and community organizations to ask what words came to mind when they think of Winnipeg. This is what we discovered (to no surprise):
Winnipeg is authentic to the core. If you are visiting or have lived here for your whole life, you know that this city sparks genuine experiences, connections and ideas.
We’re creative, diverse and world-class. Our cultural offerings are genuine and a cut above. We’ve become a beacon for human rights with a museum that speaks volumes–both in architecture and content. Our verdant parks double as outdoor theatres, while our tree canopy makes visitors green with envy. You can embark on an Arctic safari and experience polar bears swimming overhead. Our newest cultural institution bridges North to South teaching how “art is a voice” while confronting the past to creatively carve a new path to reconciliation. Soon, a horticultural exhibit like no other will open, offering visitors the chance to experience biomes from across the globe as butterflies and a massive waterfall add to the enchantment.
Plus, the stage is always set in Winnipeg, with renowned performance groups and a live music scene that is always ready for an encore.
We're innovative and industrious. We make things go, like electric buses, motor coaches and plane parts. We make discoveries in microbiology labs, polar bear conservation centres and top research universities. We improve everything from video game player experiences to payroll processing and mobile food delivery. We make noise and an outsized impact on the music and film world.
We’re taking our place on the global stage. Whether we’re named the world’s Most Intelligent Community, or one of TIME’s greatest places in the world, others see that Winnipeg is offering something special. We not only deserve the accolades–we’ve worked hard to earn them.
We know a brand is not a city, but it is a symbol of the people and places that make a city great. We’re excited to partner with local makers and businesses that are perfect reflections of this city and our story.
FFO’s fashion designer, Nick Welch, developed a Winnipeg: Made from what’s real clothing line, consisting of hats, t-shirts, tank tops and hoodies. Coal and Canary specifically created a candle with notes of amberwood, musk and oakmoss to encapsulate our story in a scent.
We’ve partnered with Kilter Brewing to create a locally brewed Winnipeg beer, Winnipeg: Made from what’s real Prairie Lager, including a branded can featuring work from local artist Dee Barsy. Decadence Chocolates created some delicious morsels with the brand logo. We also collaborated with Fresh Emblem, a success story running out of North Forge’s Fabrication Lab, which developed scented car art pieces with our new emblem.
Sharing the #RealWinnipeg story
This brand is a perfect way to show the world the real Winnipeg–and we are looking for ambassadors to spread the word. We hope you’re one of them!
Learn more about what inspired the wordmark and logo and find merchandise by local collaborators at realwinnipeg.com.
The Winnipeg story is changing, what stays the same is our authenticity.