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New facility opens a marketing decision to the masses

October 15, 2014
by Gary A. Enos, Editor
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Sometimes the most important knowledge CEOs can carry to their work involves realizing what they don't know. Sarah Sacks, LCSW, CAP, felt shorthanded in her attempt to create an important branding piece for her new LaVia Detox & Treatment Center serving Palm Beach and Martin counties in Florida, so she launched a two-step process that ended up giving her a world of feedback.

Sacks, who recently sold a medical detox facility in Palm Beach County and intends to open her new operation by mid-November, had designed a logo for the new organization herself but believed it was somehow incomplete. She visited the online service Design Crowd, where individuals and organizations can outsource creative projects to designers from around the world, and after selecting the best submissions she posted those and her original logo at the LaVia exhibit booth at last month's Moments of Change conference sponsored by Foundations Recovery Network in Palm Beach—a business-focused conference that attracts many attendees with a good marketing eye.

Those who stopped by the LaVia booth were asked to vote for their favorite logo by dropping their business card into one of five numbered cups. From the cup holding the highest number of votes would be drawn one attendee's name, and that person would receive a $100 gift card.

The entire exercise would prove very inexpensive for LaVia—Sacks says she spent $400 on the Design Crowd competition—but would yield great benefits for a new name in the treatment market. LaVia will provide detox, intensive outpatient treatment, and counseling services in South Florida.

“It was amazing; people would ask, 'What is it going to be for?'” Sachs says of her experience at the conference. “It offered a great lead-in to further discussion. I met a lot of people who want to continue the discussion.”

Worldwide input

Users of Design Crowd set their own price for what a selected designer will be paid, and most design competitions generate 100 or more submissions (Sachs received 94). “You'd be blown away by what we got,” she says. “I asked for an elegant look.” The winning submission was sent by a designer from Asia.

A total of 139 Moments of Change attendees cast votes at the conference. Sacks' original logo was actually the group's second favorite option; it lost out to a logo with less bold lettering and more of a design element. “I think I can do more with the marketing and the branding on it,” Sacks says of the selected logo.

She knows that her exercise helped familiarize many potentially influential people with a new name in South Florida's burgeoning addiction treatment community, making this arguably the best $500 she ever could have spent.

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