Making Historic Downtown Melbourne a place to see and be seen.

Downtown Melbourne

The Challenge

Historic Downtown Melbourne (DTMB) is a great place to shop, dine and attend events, like the weekly farmers market. However, with so many different venues and things to do there, the overarching brand lacked its own unified voice. During the COVID-19 pandemic, DTMB also faced tremendous hardship, as many small, locally-owned shops we’re forced to close.

Melbourne Main Street, the non-profit organization who manages Downtown Melbourne’s revitalization and economic growth, turned to MTN, Inc. to help reposition the destination as a focal point in the community.

Our Approach

This initiative was particularly special to us because we’re not just developing a brand for someone else’s downtown area. Melbourne is MTN’s headquarters. We frequent Downtown Melbourne ourselves — whether to have lunch and shop with friends or to attend an event with our family. As such, we also have unique insight into what the destination is like because we’ve experienced it first-hand.

To kick things off, we considered:

  • The history of the location
  • Current public perception
  • Melbourne Main Street’s vision, mission and goals

Melbourne Main Street planned to revitalize and set DTMB up for economic success by focusing on four main strategies: economic vitality, design, organization and promotion.

The goal was to make DTMB a preferred destination for high-quality shopping, dining and entertainment by preserving and leveraging the community’s historical assets, cultural roots and modern-day charm.

To understand the audience and how to best achieve Melbourne Main Street’s goals, MTN analyzed surveys completed by visitors and business owners, including questions like: “What draws individuals to Downtown Melbourne?” and “What are the positive perceptions of Downtown Melbourne we need to preserve?”

After assessing the responses, we drew conclusions like the importance of including “historic” in the branding, as it embodies the idea that the character, charm and soul of the community will be preserved, even despite inevitable growth.

We then began our identity creation journey

The Deliverables

MTN, Inc. pitched five concepts to the key stakeholders. They ultimately chose the variation that used the acronym “DTMB” for “Downtown Melbourne.” The brand’s simplicity lends itself to clear, compelling marketing that’s easy to remember:, #DTMB, “Meet me in DTMB.”

Downtown Melbourne Deliverables

For the design, we blended bold, confident typography with icons that represented the historic Melbourne area. A classic sailing icon was added into the negative space of the “D” and a crane silhouette within the “B,” a nod to Harbor City and Crane Creek waterfront.

These icons made it easy to build supporting visuals for the remainder of the marketing deliverables.

Some of the deliverables we executed included:

  • Market Research
  • Content Writing
  • Design & Execution
  • Website Strategy & Development
  • Strategic Marketing Planning

The Results

To ensure consistent brand implementation, MTN created an extensive brand guide. We also helped coordinate, cast and direct a photoshoot in Downtown Melbourne to entice target audiences to “Shop, Dine, Live, Play, Stay, Explore.”

These themes and accompanying iconography and photography are carried out on colorful street banners and wayfinding signs throughout town, ads, brochures, visitor guides, and on the website.

MTN, Inc. also wrote content, designed and developed an extensive new website to market DTMB as a premiere destination. We gave Melbourne Main Street full access to manage events and ticket sales (an essential component of revenue generation that goes toward their mission). The website also serves as a hub for Melbourne Main Street membership.

Moving forward, Melbourne Main Street has the tools and visuals necessary to maintain a professional, trusted look that will help them market the downtown area and attract developers, businesses and visitors, ultimately igniting and sustaining a cyclical economy.