Hipstoric™ Old City

September 18th, 2007

The Old City District’s new slogan, Hipstoric™, is causing ripples in Philadelphia and the reaction in the blogosphere has been rather negative.

Philadelphia Weekly’s “Philadelphia Will Do” blog was particularly harsh. This week they posted a new entry “Old City Slogan Is Shit-Tastic!”   As the post reviews the run-of-the-mill press release issued by Old City District (whose acronym, I might add, is OCD), it’s cut off by an abrupt interjection:

“Okay, stop. That’s enough. I can’t take it. Hipstoric™? And — yes, I looked it up — it’s registered with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. I can’t take it anymore. Enough, I’m done for today, possibly forever. Thanks a lot, Old City District!”

Additional comments ranged from harsh (“Hipstoric?? Not in my town scum bag!” to apathetically amused (“You know my Hipstoric don’t lie…and I’m starting to feel it’s right”).

These anecdotal opinions definitely throw the cold shoulder to Hipstoric™,.  but to get a broader perspective, I polled our agency networks to gauge response from the business and branding community. Here’s what a few of them had to say:

“On a good note – it immediately conjures the historic aspect of old city, but with a twist. On a bad note – it’s a little awkward to say.”

“I like it.  It’s a provocative bold stroke from a branding firm.”

“Every nook and cranny of the earth thinks they can create tourism and get an economic payday by coming up with a slogan. With the exceptions of a few (“I love NY,” “Virginia is for Lovers,” and “Philly’s More Fun When You Sleep Over”), they’re largely ineffective.”

“It’s familiar and yet unique. It doesn’t try too hard.”

So there you have it – more opinions to balance out the equation. Our take: “Hipstoric” deserves more credit than PW gives it, but it’ll take a lot more than a catchy word to make an impact.

Posted Under: Greater Philadelphia
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