Dayton … “a City of Neighbors”


Dayton … “a City of Neighbors”

  “There’s no place like Dayton, there’s on place like home. You’re a song in my mind, with a style all your own. You’re a City of Neighbors and I’m calling you home.”

Dayton residents told Penny/Ohlmann/Neiman what they thought of their city, so P/O/N used Daytonians to tell the city’s story – that it is a “City o Neighbors.”

Dayton unveiled its image campaign, “City of Neighbors,” in 1990, based on a fully integrated marketing plan created by P/O/N. The campaign was targeted to reach City of Dayton and area residents. It was built on input from Dayton residents, gathered by P/O/N through the use of several focus groups and a “person on the street survey.”

The research showed that what Daytonians most enjoy about their city is the friendly, helpful people and the interaction within their neighborhoods. Residents said this “neighborly” feeling extended into their jobs and their recreation.

To spread a “City of Neighbors” message, P/O/N developed a media campaign using a new, distinctive logo, and television, radio, newspaper and billboard advertising.

The campaign features real Dayton residents sharing their feelings about the city. Scenes show residents in their own front yards spending time with their neighbors, working in their Dayton businesses and taking part in the city recreation they most enjoy.

The logo and theme also appeared on RTA bus signs, banners and additional materials, all promoting the message sent by Daytonians to their fellow residents – that Dayton is the “City of Neighbors.”

Residents Believe Dayton is a “City of Neighbors”

Just as research was used to determine residents’ image of their city, follow-up research was conducted to measure the effectiveness of the campaign. A telephone survey of Dayton area residents was conducted.

Here is what they said about a “City of Neighbors” campaign:

  • 9 of 10 said the city should be involved in a campaign to enhance its image
  • 75% said the slogan “City of Neighbors’ is believable.
  • 75% believe “City of Neighbors’ is a fair or good description of Dayton
  • 55% remembered the theme line “City of Neighbors”
  • 39% said their opinion of Dayton has improved within the past year; 46% of these respondents credit “City of Neighbors” with at least some effect on this positive change.


Penny Ohlmann Neimann

The Ohlmann Group has a rich history that began in Dayton, Ohio in 1949, where the agency was founded as Penny and Penny by Bob Penny and his wife Jean. In 1964, Walter Ohlmann joined the firm. Ralph Neiman came on in 1969 and the firm became Penny/Ohlmann/Neiman. In 2011, P/O/N was renamed The Ohlmann Group to better reflect the agency's ongoing evolution and collaborative nature.

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