Now’s your chance to share your thoughts on ‘West Mass’

  • Mount Sugarloaf in South Deerfield is a popular attraction in Western Massachusetts. Recorder Staff

  • Logo for West Mass. CONTRIBUTED IMAGE

Recorder Staff
Wednesday, April 19, 2017

GREENFIELD — Organizers behind the “West Mass” branding strategy are seeking input on their $80,000 promotional direction.

This move comes after “West Mass” was met with many negative reactions, including a petition aimed to stop the brand from becoming a reality.

A survey, hosted on SurveyMonkey, asks the public to choose between “West Mass” and “Western Mass,” and fill out basic demographic information. There’s also a chance at the end of the survey to write confidential comments.

No one from the Greater Springfield Convention and Visitors Bureau or the Economic Development Council of Western Mass., the Springfield organizations behind the branding effort, could be reached for comment Wednesday evening.

Critical reception

Opposition to the marketing effort and the new name — which took nearly a year and $80,000 to complete — arose immediately after “West Mass” was unveiled by the Oklahoma creative agency Cubic Creative in February.

In the weeks following, an online petition against the name was started by East Longmeadow resident Dylan Pilon, owner of Cloud 9 Marketing Group. Since then, it’s garnered just shy of 1,500 signatures.

As a result, Pilon said he’s since been invited to a few meetings with members of the economic development council and visitors bureau to share input.

“It’s nice they listened to us, brought us in, and got our thoughts. The ‘West Mass’ thing fell flat. it was never great to begin with. In my opinion, the problem is, initially, they didn’t reach out to anyone outside their organization,” Pilon said.

Elsewhere online, a promotional video released on YouTube in conjunction with the new “West Mass” name received such a bad public reaction the visitors bureau soon took it down.

To take the survey, visit svy.mk/2pTots4. Pilon’s petition can be found at bit.ly/2phBsaU.