A new image for old Montreal

Tourisme Montreal goes simple and modern to create a cohesive picture of what the city has to offer travellers.

TOURISME MONTRÉAL - Tourisme Montréal puts the city at the heart

Tourisme Montréal hopes to infuse the fun of modern life into the city’s old world charm with a new brand image launched this week.

The new image is based around a new logo, developed by Lg2, which features clean red text and emphasizes the accent on the letter é, either by extending it or replacing with an image like a firework or balloon. The design will also be used across the organization’s sub-brands (Montréal, Tourisme Montréal and the ongoing social media campaign MTLmoments) and can also be easily applied to different images and themes.

Thematic moments are a major aspect of the city’s strategy this year, featuring a central idea for every season. This has already included the “Montreal Lights Up” campaign that it executed this winter, and will include spring’s “Montréal Connects” (based around digital arts showcase Montréal’s Digital Spring and other digital events), summer’s “Montréal Revs Up” (referring to the F1 Grand Prix) and “Montréal Ignites” (based around flagship festivals like Jazz Fest and Just For Laughs) and fall’s “Montréal Indulges” (based around restaurant festival MTL a TABLE).

Emmanuelle Legault, VP of marketing at Tourisme Montréal, says the organization conducted a survey of tourists, community members and business partners last year and found that while the previous “A la Montréal” brand platform made the city feel very welcoming and had an old world, European charm, it didn’t communicate the creative, urban, fun place Montreal had become.

“We heard positive things, but none of [it was about] what Montréal is starting to become,” Legault says. “We thought, if we want to start working on those thematic moments, is ‘A la Montréal’ really going to help us entice travelers and get them to see Montréal as the vibrant city it is?”

TOURISME MONTRÉAL - Tourisme Montréal puts the city at the heartLegault adds that the accent on Montréal was put at the centre of the new logo as a focal point so as not to lose the French elements of the city’s DNA. Another benefit, she says, is that it creates a cohesiveness, eliminating different logos and themes that were being used across sub-brands, instead unifying them under the new images.

While the thematic moments are each built around events and attractions in Montréal, it is only part of it, as Tourisme Montréal will be enlisting the help of local businesses and community organizations to find their own ways to enhance the themes, much like what was done for “Montréal Lights Up.”

“We are trying to get more partners involved so we can try to create an experience within the city that ensures continuity in all our communication efforts,” Legault says. “So we are really trying to make sure that if these [events] are a seasonal destination for travellers, that they are submerged in the theme.”

The kind of traveler the city is targeting will depend on the theme of the season, with themes like “Montréal Lights Up” and “Montréal Connects” aiming to attract millennial travelers and summer themes like “Montréal Revs Up” and “Montréal Ignites” targeting a broader audience. In addition to looking to attract travelers from Ontario and the northeastern U.S., Tourisme Montréal will be launching a campaign in France this summer.