When Stock Photos Attack

Here’s a new poster that Downtown Charlottetown Inc. is using to promote the core as a place for working. Ah yes, downtown working — I can take my jacket off, sling it over my shoulder, and talk on my sleek mobile phone. At least when I’m not gathered around a laptop in a pure white room working with colleagues.

Live It Up Downtown

I’ve always been firmly in the “if it’s a good idea, it will work” camp, and I find lifestyle marketing like this to not only be insulting — I actually do work downtown, and that’s about as far from my photographic reality as you can get — but simply misguided and wasteful.

For more of same, see the companion website where you can learn about the “endless excitement around every corner.”


Ann's picture
Ann on June 24, 2006 - 23:18 Permalink

G’moon Peter.
You are the biggest user of a sleek mobile phone that I know. And arne’t the silverorange rooms white and don’t they use laptops?
And I agree that the jacket over the shoulder is a bit much..but insulting?

This is not a cynical campaign — this is an honest effort which is extolling the virtues of something you believe in and I think you should cut them a little slack.

Peter Rukavina's picture
Peter Rukavina on June 25, 2006 - 14:13 Permalink

I can guarantee you that my friends at silverorange, when they were out in the suburbs looking for a new home, wouldn’t have been swayed downtown by slung-jacket guy.

I also believe in avocados, but I don’t thing they need poster support.

Dan James's picture
Dan James on June 25, 2006 - 15:28 Permalink

I don’t know Peter. I’d rather see posters like this around town instead of the stock photo ones.

Personally the posters rub me the wrong way. While I share a lot of the same feelings as Peter about the posters it’s the organization behind it that really gets me going. As a downtown business we now pay a downtown tax. That’s right: If you operate a business in the downtown area you have “downtown inc” fees on your tax bill. I’m not a city planner, but I would guess that taxing the businesses downtown is not a good way to attract business to the area.

Maybe I’m just grumpy and haven’t yet enjoyed the benefits of a “Live it up card!

Peter Rukavina's picture
Peter Rukavina on June 25, 2006 - 16:19 Permalink

Question for Dan: did anyone from the City of Charlottetown or Downtown Charlottetown Inc. contact you after you moved downtown to (a) welcome you downtown and/or (b) find out what attracted your downtown so they could exert the same mojo on others?

Dan James's picture
Dan James on June 25, 2006 - 16:53 Permalink

Peter: No. I don’t believe anyone did either A or B. I believe the only “official” interaction we’ve had is when we’ve hosted events at 84 Fitzroy and city officials would attend.

I think there is a significant lack of data when it comes to these marketing campaigns. How many companies have moved downtown as a direct result of the efforts? How many have left? I doubt there will be any follow up or record keeping on the tail end of the campaign.