Wednesday, July 6, 2022

Newport News Launches Community-Wide Research And Branding Initiative

Sign up here for our free newsletter that tells you about the newest stories, three mornings each week.

NEWPORT NEWS—Newport News has launched an intensive research initiative focused on discovering and defining the assets and qualities that make the city unique in the marketplace. Through this community-wide effort, the city will create a unified and authentic message and communications strategy that is relevant to the city’s current environment while also highlighting the city’s distinct attributes.

In 2019, Newport News City Council established a new Strategic Plan, with priorities that impact People, Places and Quality Government. One of the focuses under Quality Government is branding and marketing, with a goal of developing a brand strategy and promise that is clear, compelling, and aligned with the other strategic priorities. 

“Newport News has a powerful and inspiring story to tell,” said Newport News City Manager Cindy Rohlf. “This branding initiative will help us communicate that story in a way that resonates with a variety of audiences.”

Newport News has partnered with Jacksonville-based North Star Place Branding + Marketing on this project. A leader in capturing and crafting the story of places, North Star has helped develop brands for more than 250 cities, regions, states, and municipalities nationwide. North Star’s integrated process includes research, strategy, creative development, and implementation planning.

“Over the next several months, we plan to engage with a wide range of voices, including residents, businesses, visitors, students, and state and regional leaders to get a feel for the history, culture, geography, and society of this historic waterfront city,” explained Will Ketchum, CEO of North Star. “Anyone who lives or works in Newport News as well as those who feel a connection to the city will have the opportunity to add their voice to the research.”

Stakeholder engagement is critical in the creation of an authentic city brand. To ensure the new city brand captures the city’s diversity and distinct attributes, Newport News will offer numerous opportunities for engagement, including focus groups, interviews, phone conversations, virtual meetings, a community-wide survey, and more.

The city has launched a website,, to provide background information on the project and post updates. The public is asked to visit the site to learn about the project, register to be emailed when the community-wide survey is live, sign-up as a brand ambassador, or share their Newport News story. The website is available in English and Spanish.

To get involved and track the project’s progress, visit The city created a video to highlight the project. The public is also invited to visit Newport News Television’s YouTube page to view a video highlighting the project.

You must purchase this article or be a subscriber to comment on it.

Latest News

Water Country USA’s Newest Attraction Opening July 15

YORK-Water Country USA’s younger guests will have a new area of the park to explore later this month. The water park’s newest attraction, Lil’Surfers Splash...

Food Lion Honors Two Williamsburg Employees For Their Service

JAMES CITY-The Food Lion grocery store chain recently recognized long-term associates for their service to the company. Among those honored were two employees who...

Welcome to the future of local news

Today, July 1, we started a new way to pay for news. Yes, we want you to subscribe, but we know nobody subscribes to every site they visit just because there's a paywall.

So if you don't want to subscribe (even at the low price of $39.99 for a year), you can pay for access to individual articles. Or just buy a 24-hour pass, as if you were buying a single copy of a newspaper (except we also give you access to all the news we published before that day). We use a new payment service called Transact, which lets you pay for individual articles in as little as three seconds. And you will get $3 in free credit just for signing up (just an email address, no credit card required), which will let you pay for about 15 articles.

This is new for everyone, so we're going to ease you into this. Initially, there won't be many articles that you have to pay for. Short ones will always be free. And even the longer stories will let you read the first half or so for free. We'd love to hear what you think, so send us a note at