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A Big Brand Challenge: Putting Houston first for Super Bowl audiences

Posted on Categories BrandonomicsTags

Logos are challenging because you have to get across the core essence of your brand in just a few marks. And this challenge is even greater when the audiences are broad. So how do you appeal to the many audiences of the Super Bowl while keeping the core idea of excitement? Robin Tooms asks Lisa Gagnon, vice president of marketing for the 2017 Houston Super Bowl Host Committee.

Robin: Hello and welcome to this edition of Brandonomics, an inside look at top brands and their marketing strategies. I’m Robin Tooms, VP of Strategy at Savage Brands, and my guest again is Lisa Gagnon, VP of Marketing at the Houston Super Bowl Host Committee. So, Lisa, I’m so glad you’re back on Brandonomics.

Lisa: Thank you. Thanks for having me.

Robin: And we’re talking brands, which is even better.

Lisa: I know; I know. My favorite topic.

Robin: And mine too. So let’s talk some about the actual Houston Host Committee brand (Lisa:Sure.). So, I want to know more about some of the decisions that you all made into the brand platform itself, and we’re talking brand here with a big “B.”

Lisa: Yep. So, our brand really is about… I’ll tell you, it was a tough challenge because, in my previous brand world you have a very specific brand, a very specific product, a very specific target audience. From a host committee perspective, we are targeting almost everybody. We’re targeting football fans, we’re talking those people; residents, out of towners, people who don’t know much about Houston. So, from a brand perspective it is extremely broad, but really, our brand is all about driving home the excitement of bringing one of the world’s ultimate events, which is the Super Bowl, to the city of Houston. So, that’s really what we’ve tried to do with our brand.

Robin: Obviously we’ve seen the logo now; the logo’s been launched. How does that kind of manifest itself into the logo that we’ve seen?

Lisa: Yeah, so what’s different from our logo versus other host committee logos, or other similar logos is that Houston is very forefront. So, you’ll see in it Houston is in big letters. We do have a nod to football, so there is a football and a star, which is nod to the Lone Star State, and so that is, like, how we tie together Houston with football, but again, really focusing on the core essence of Houston’s host city for Super Bowl LI.

Robin: And from a branding perspective, I appreciate how modern it looks.

Lisa: It is very modern. Modern and clean, and really, again, we’re trying to be the city of the future, and we want our brand to reflect that as well.

Robin: Yes, and that’s perfect. Thank you so much for sharing that.

Lisa: You’re welcome.

Robin: This has been another edition of Brandonomics, an inside look at top brands and their marketing strategies.


The Houston Super Bowl Host Committee is the centralized planning entity for Super Bowl LI and acts as the liaison between the NFL, City of Houston, Harris County and the local community. The Host Committee is a private non-profit 501(c)(6) Texas corporation, and is responsible for Super Bowl LI festivities and logistics. Super Bowl LI will be a Super Bowl like no other, because Houston is like no other city. Houston doesn’t depend on its past. It looks to, and stands for, the future. It’s a modern and dynamic city renowned for its hospitality. The most diverse city in the U.S., Houston is a city with no equal. With a ‘can-do’ attitude and an “I got here as soon as I could” pride, there is no better place to hold the biggest sporting event in the world. Houston is proud host to Super Bowl LI.

Learn more about the logo itself at:

Icon Purpose Red

If you’re interested in knowing more about how purposeful companies attract the best employees, build loyal relationships with their customers, and differentiate themselves from their competition, then let’s start a conversation.