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Case Study: Local First

Maintaining Brand Consistency from Creation to Growth

“TIS has served as our marketing ally for 12 years. I highly recommend the whole team, and I don’t know what we’d do without them!”

-Elissa Hillary, Former President


Being responsible for the Local First brand from its creation through today has allowed our entire team to manage a huge organization with lots of pieces and parts. This has ensured brand consistency from day one through its evolution, allowing Local First’s mission and purpose to gain traction and become a strong, viable brand leader in the community.


Membership: 892 members as reported in the 2016 Annual Report (Up 200+ members from 2015)

Online Presence: Local First reported 30,166 social media followers in their 2016 Annual Report—a 41% growth from 2015

Impact: 70% of Local First members report seeing a positive impact as a result of being involved with Local First. 46% see an increase in business thanks to Local First efforts (Local First 2016 Annual Report).



TIS was called on by Guy Bazzani to help create a local organization that followed the mission of national organization Common Future (formerly known as BALLE) to support local businesses in the West Michigan market. We wanted to create a credible platform that Grand Rapids business owners and community members could get behind, participate in and promote the reasons why local business is vital to our communities.


TIS created a public visual identity for Local First that made the community take notice. A strong logo, membership materials including window decals and a directory, and website allowed business owners and community members to recognize the businesses affiliated with Local First. TIS helped Local First create a brand that more stakeholders wanted to become involved with, as well. 


A consistent, ever-growing brand that both local business and community members want to engage with in some way—whether it be becoming a member, supporting, shopping, and/or promoting. Local First’s strong, consistent visual identity has allowed the brand to grow and become more recognizable, as well as become the base to support growth of the brand with sub-entities.