Click through the slideshow above for the full survey results
The results of a regional survey centered around Wichita’s future branding were revealed Monday night at the Wichita Downtown Development Corporation office.
Back in September, a California-based consulting firm named Believable Brands conducted surveys to find out what Wichita's strengths and weaknesses were. They contacted residents, business owners, visitors and “potential visitors.” The $65,000 project, which was organized by several citywide organizations, fielded nearly 2,000 respondents.
The results? Wichita has low self-esteem.
“I think that’s something that we heard loud and clear in this survey, is that we are our own worst critics,” says Susie Santo, president of Go Wichita Convention and Visitors Bureau. “We have an opportunity to really educate the residents about all the great things we have to be proud of—and we’ve got a lot to be proud of.”
Those surveyed within the Wichita area consistently rated things like its history, culture, art scene and reputation as a unique destination below those who have visited.
As someone in the crowd puts it, before Wichita can sell itself to tourists, it has to sell itself to residents.
Other results indicate sites like the Sedgwick County Zoo, Keeper of the Plains, and Old Town as the city’s biggest draws. Shopping and dining were also popular.
The survey also asked participants for buzzwords that described Wichita. The most popular were:
· Friendly, hospitable and family-oriented
· Affordable and clean
· Traditional values
· Patriotic and humble
· Midwestern lifestyle
· Innovative working class, spirit of entrepreneurship and self reliance
Susie Santo of GoWichita says the end product of these surveys will be a marketing campaign that should debut next summer.