Keeping it weird in Austin, Texas
The brainchild of the Austin Independent Business Alliance, the Keep Austin Weird campaign is about supporting and promoting small local businesses in the city.
The campaign was so successful in encapsulating the eclectic, tolerant and progressive nature of the city that it transcended the initial slogan and became the positioning for the whole city.
The strength of the positioning is that is really understands what makes Austin unique – that the ability of the city to attract things that are edgy, alternative and marginalised in a conservative state is also its selling point.
Austin is a global centre for live music and creative pursuits of all kinds. By understanding the link between tolerance of difference and creativity, the Keep Austin Weird positioning has helped to celebrate and cement its creative role as a social and economic driver for the city.
The celebration of difference, particularly in relation to unique small businesses, has since been taken up by other cities like Portland, Oregon who can also differentiate themselves in a global market by being a just a little weird.