‘Have It Made Here’ branding is more than just a slogan

It won’t happen overnight, but Explore York is counting on the new brand to further the county as a destination.

Story paid for by: Explore York
Written by: Anthony Machcinski
"Have It Made Here" can be used in numerous ways, like labels on products, logos on beer glasses or email signatures on websites. (Photo by Caleb Robertson/Our York Media)

Louise Heine envisions a day where “Have it Made Here” will be woven throughout the community.

Louise, the Destination Marketing Director for Explore York, sees multiple opportunities for other organizations and businesses to co-brand.

In February, Explore York and a group of York County organizations unveiled the brand tagline “Have it Made Here” to attract outsiders to York County while giving residents a sense of pride.

“When you’re up against this pendulum of generational change, it really does take a village,” says Mark Walters, Director of Communications for York County. “If you don’t keep harping on it and instilling it, it’s not going to work.

“It’s a monstrous path, but we’re all embracing that.”

The new county logo and slogan "Have It Made Here" draws from the county's manufacturing history, as well as the numerous artists who create work here and the historical events that took place here.

Why branding matters

Branding efforts in other states show the potential in “Have It Made Here” when properly supported.

Pure Michigan, the state’s tourism campaign, sought to change perception on Michigan – both inside and outside the state – from the decaying industrial factories and layoffs to a state with plenty more to offer.

To this day, many consider it the pinnacle in branding efforts. While the goal of “Have It Made Here” is to reach Pure Michigan’s success, the group will need to find a different way.

Pure Michigan was supported by an eight-figure budget. “Have It Made Here” won’t have anything close to that. But what it does have is York County’s personality to get things done.

“We want people to incorporate the brand on their products and show their pride in being made in York County,” says Sarah Thomas, Marketing and Communications Director for the York County Community Foundation. “We want people to come here and visit, to take the factory tours or go to an art show. Eventually, maybe they go, ‘You know what? That’d be a great place to live.’”

Creating a brand to represent the many facets of the county took time, and while it'll be years until the brand sticks, the members of the group behind the "Have It Made Here" branding are in it for the long haul. (Photos by Caleb Robertson/Our York Media)

Representing York County

The campaign drew on York’s manufacturing history.

Sure, companies like Harley-Davidson and Snyder’s of Hanover call York County home, but it’s the place where world-renown artists find inspiration for their work. It’s the place that birthed history for centuries and creates memories every day.

“Have It Made Here” was the perfect slogan to sum it all up.

“This needed to resonate with every person that identifies with York County,” says Elaine Bonneau, Downtown Inc’s president. “It is inclusive. It needed to represent everyone from 8-80 years old and this does just that.”

Laura Gurreri, Explore York president, added, “Historic architecture and monuments are located throughout the county and preserve three centuries of American life in South Central PA. History was made here.”

The "Have It Made Here" team wants people and businesses to incorporate the brand on their products and show their pride in being made in York County. (Photo by Caleb Robertson/Our York Media)

How could “Have It Made Here” be used?

Here are some ways the group believes businesses can use the “Have It Made Here” branding:

It’d be cool to see pint glasses and coasters with the “Have It Made Here” branding. We have 6 craft breweries downtown making incredible things every day – creativity in a glass.

Andrew Staub Downtown Inc

Our early conversations talked about manufacturing, places like Harley-Davidson putting the branding on their website or on some of their work would be a huge success.

Katie Mahoney York County Economic Alliance

I’m looking forward to finding community partners with high traffic locations that would be willing to have a wall painted to promote the brand. Ideally, I would like to install photo-op units using elements of the county logo across the county complete with branded signage to encourage people make history and memories in York County by standing inside the circle and forming a Y with their arms, then sharing it on social media with the hashtag, ‘Have It Made Here.’”

Louise Heine Explore York

People here don’t realize the depth of the artists that call York home. They work in York, but the market for their work goes outside the city. ‘Have It Made Here’ would show people that they don’t have to go to Philly or Baltimore for art.

Kelley Gibson Cultural Alliance of York County

Shelf space in stores is cutthroat competitive in York County because all of the snack companies from here and that’s special. It would be great to see when you walk into a store and see a “Have It Made Here” snack section – it practically exists already.

Mark Walters York County

It’d be cool to see pint glasses and coasters with the “Have It Made Here” branding. We have 6 craft breweries downtown making incredible things every day – creativity in a glass.

Andrew Staub Downtown Inc

I’m looking forward to finding community partners with high traffic locations that would be willing to have a wall painted to promote the brand. Ideally, I would like to install photo-op units using elements of the county logo across the county complete with branded signage to encourage people make history and memories in York County by standing inside the circle and forming a Y with their arms, then sharing it on social media with the hashtag, ‘Have It Made Here.’”

Louise Heine Explore York

Our early conversations talked about manufacturing, places like Harley-Davidson putting the branding on their website or on some of their work would be a huge success.

Katie Mahoney York County Economic Alliance

People here don’t realize the depth of the artists that call York home. They work in York, but the market for their work goes outside the city. ‘Have It Made Here’ would show people that they don’t have to go to Philly or Baltimore for art.

Kelley Gibson Cultural Alliance of York County

Shelf space in stores is cutthroat competitive in York County because all of the snack companies from here and that’s special. It would be great to see when you walk into a store and see a “Have It Made Here” snack section – it practically exists already.

Mark Walters York County
Members of the "Have It Made Here" branding team include Mark Walters from the York County Office of Communications and Laura Gurreri and Louise Heine of Explore York (first photo), Katie Mahoney of the York County Economic Alliance and Kelley Gibson of the Cultural Alliance of York County (middle photo), and Elaine Bonneau of Downtown Inc. (Photos by Caleb Robertson/Our York Media)

Brand Management Team

Creating this brand was more than polling people from York. Here’s the team from organizations across York County who shaped the brand:

Brand Management Team

Creating this brand was more than polling people from York. Here’s the team from organizations across York County who shaped the brand:

Sarah Thomas
York County Community Foundation
Louise Heine
Explore York
Katie Mahoney
York County Economic Alliance
Silas Chamberlin
Downtown Inc/YCEA
Andrew Staub
Downtown Inc
Kelley Gibson
Cultural Alliance of York County
Justine Trucksess
Main Street Hanover
Mark Walters
York County
Jane Conover
York County Community Foundation
Laura Gurreri
Explore York
Denise Restuccia
Explore York
Shannon Hamblin
Downtown Inc
Elaine Bonneau
Downtown Inc
Sarah Thomas
York County Community Foundation
Louise Heine
Explore York
Katie Mahoney
York County Economic Alliance
Silas Chamberlin
Downtown Inc/YCEA
Andrew Staub
Downtown Inc
Kelley Gibson
Cultural Alliance of York County
Justine Trucksess
Main Street Hanover
Mark Walters
York County
Jane Conover
York County Community Foundation
Laura Gurreri
Explore York
Denise Restuccia
Explore York
Shannon Hamblin
Downtown Inc
Elaine Bonneau
Downtown Inc

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