The ‘Little City’ Brand — What’s Your Opinion?

Little_City_Logo__Falls_Church 300 pixThe City of Falls Church has rolled out a new brand celebrating “The Little City.”  The branding initiative was conducted by the SmithGifford advertising firm on behalf of the Falls Church Economic Development Authority, and the new brand and logo were released earlier this week.   [Note:  Logo shown at right is updated since this article was originally published.  See update below for previous version.]

SmithGifford’s presentation is a quick one – 20 pages of Powerpoint slides that you can flip through in 60 seconds.

We’re interested in what you think.  Here are two ways to provide feedback — a) comment publicly at the bottom of this page (and, as always, if you’re going to use the flame thrower, we ask that you provide your full name); or b) comment privately by sending an email to

Feel free to provide written comments, but also give us your position on a scale of 1-5:

1 – Love it

2 – Like it

3 – Don’t care

4 – Don’t like it

5 – Hate it

Hopefully we’ll get enough feedback to provide results early next week.

We have been branded!  Let us know what you think about “The Little City”!

Update, Dec. 4, 2:38 pm: In the comments below, Susanna Schnably asks about a logo design from several years ago, and Barry Buschow responded and sent it to the Times. Mr. Buschow says it comes from a 2006 effort by the City’s Economic Development Authority. We have reproduced it below.

Update, Dec. 5, 5:51 pm: Also in the comments, Suzanne Updike mentions that she likes the Falls Church City Public Schools logo, and asks it to be reproduced here.

Earlier version of the logo, with the troublesome loop in the "y." Update, Dec. 6, 8:15 pm: Matt Smith of SmithGifford sent us a version of the logo without the loop in the “y,” which now appears at the top of this story.  So no more confusion about “City” or “Citey.”  The previous logo appears at right.  The schools and EDA logos appear below.

Schools logo:

2006 EDA logo:

2006 EDA logo

December 4, 2009 


56 Responses to “The ‘Little City’ Brand — What’s Your Opinion?”

  1. Barry Buschow on December 6th, 2009 9:11 pm

    How about “Tree City – Falls Church, VA”?????? Catchy Huh?????

  2. Charlie Anderson, FC on December 6th, 2009 9:48 pm

    We built all of this residential because we were told we needed the density to get commercial to come. Please tell me how a geographic area that has among the highest education and income levels can’t attact businesses wanting that money. It is the failure of the EDO. The businesses are savvy, but they look at Bailey’s Crossroads and think “that’s close enough.” The EDO has to find a way to make them think otherwise. I don’t think this logo will bring a re-balance to our economic-residential revenue.

  3. Bruce Geoffrion on December 6th, 2009 10:52 pm

    Like an earlier comment from John Coleman, I’d like to send another example of a little city with a great website. Please take a look at
    This is a suburb of Indianapolis with a vibrant lifestyle. I found this site compelling, and informative. Take a look at a few of the drop down tabs for some good suggestions. I would like to see Falls Church represented this way.

  4. Andy Rankin (Falls Church) on December 7th, 2009 8:46 am

    Hi Charlie,

    I’ve been in the City for about 1.5 years so I wasn’t around when the new residential stuff was debated so I won’t comment on what was told and for what reason.

    When we talk about “commercial” there are several different things we could mean. Target and Macys are commercial. So are law firms and consulting companies. I think large retail businesses look for density and disposable income and parking and access and all sorts of things. We have people with high income levels but we don’t have great locations for large retail places. Plus, I’ve never understood the fascination with high end, national retailers as being some kind of windfall for the City.

    The kind of commercial I think we should be targeting are the businesses with 20-50 employees who want to be located centrally in the region, close to Metro, but not in a giant place like Tyson’s Corner. This would be small technology companies, law firms, consultants, architects, doctors, accountants, etc. These aren’t exciting businesses and obviously I’d like some retail mixed in there – but I’m fine with mom & pop retail.

    When I was considering moving my company into the City I found the EDO to be very helpful and persuasive. I’m guessing there are other things the EDO could be doing but I’m not sure I’d blame all our problems on the EDO. And I hope they’re not spending a bunch of time trying to convince giant retailers to locate on Broad Street. I’d love to hear what people think the EDO *should* be doing.

  5. J Bowman on December 9th, 2009 9:31 pm

    4 – Don’t like it
    It is far too juvenile.

  6. Pirouz Khanmalek on December 10th, 2009 2:45 am

    I am very shocked and disappointed.

    This slogan and its funny logo is going to make our vibrant city look like a big kindergarten. I hope we did not use our tax money to pay for this. We didn’t have to hire an outside agency and waste a few months for this. We could just ask the kids in our neigborhood. They would have done a better job.

    Our city is suffering financially mainly because we do not have enough commercial buildings and/or serious businesses. With this kind of mentality we definitely are not going to solve that problem. I think this is going to hurt the city financially even more in long run.

    I wish we could learn a little bit from Arlington.

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