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Ducey Wants To Improve Arizona's Image Through Marketing Campaign

The Ducey administration has decided to spend money to polish the state's image.
Gubernatorial press aide Daniel Scarpinato said Gov. Ducey and the Arizona Commerce Authority have hired a firm to talk with Arizonans to come up with the kind of catch phrase that has helped define other states, like "Don't Mess With Texas'' or "I (Heart) NY.''

Kathy Heasley, president of Heasley and Partners, the Scottsdale-based firm which got the contract, said it will involve more than words. She also envisions creating a logo that people instantly identify with Arizona.

Heasley acknowledged that much of what is known about Arizona, particularly by outsiders, is because the state — and its politicians and laws and policies — often wind up as comedy fodder for late night talk show hosts. But she brushed that aside.

"No state, no entity, no company is going to be able to completely 100 percent squelch all the commentary that might be made. But what does need to happen is there needs to be a positive voice, a balanced voice that comes out there, too," said Heasley.

Heasley and Partners also worked with Cold Stone Creamery when Doug Ducey was its chief executive. Scarpinato said it's just a coincidence that Heasley's company got the contract. He said it was awarded through a competitive bidding process.

Scarpinato also said this isn't an effort to paper over the state's problems. He promised that what the project discovers about what Arizonans think will be made public — good and bad. But he said that negative stuff is what makes it important to get a positive message out.

"I mean, you and I and everyone that lives here knows that this is a great state. Otherwise, we wouldn't be living here," said Scarpinato.