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David C. Cook: Who’s Dave?

David C. Cook - Who is Dave   L

A weekend article in the Colorado Springs Gazette focused on the corporate identities of ministry organizations based in the area, including HCJB (now called Reach Beyond), David C. Cook and Focus on the Family.

The section on David C. Cook is of interest to readers here:

David C Cook, a major Christian publishing house that was founded in 1875, changed its name to Cook Communications Ministries in 1994 following a series of acquisitions. But after a 2007 leadership transition, the company returned to the David C Cook name.

Designer Thom Hoyman has been helping to tweak Cook’s image ever since. The “Who’s Dave?” campaign summarizes and humanizes the company, which is little understood by millions of people around the world who use its resources. Even its local employees have struggled to articulate its work clearly.

Cook, which moved to the Springs in 1995, is a big company, selling $80 million worth of resources a year from its three major divisions: curriculum published in 150 languages for churches and Sunday schools; books on Christian living by authors such as best-seller Francis Chan; and music that includes Integrity Music, one of the world’s larger Christian labels.

“When you have too many identities, you have no identity,” said Hoyman in a recent presentation about the long-running rebranding project.

The company’s new slogan, “Transforming lives together,” was partially inspired by campaigns for The Home Depot and Lowe’s.

“We see ourselves as a partner, not a peddler,” Hoyman said.

The “Who’s Dave” campaign explains that unlike many local nonprofit ministries, Cook is a for-profit company that uses profits to support a non-profit foundation that works around the world. CEO Cris Doornbos said Cook will donate $5 million to its foundation this year.

Hoyman’s campaign explains this complex arrangement with an illustration about hybrid cars that run on both gasoline and electricity.

“This is part of what really inspires me to work for David C Cook,” Hoyman said. “I love the fact that I work for a company that sells to the rich so it can give to the poor!”

Read the entire article by clicking here.

I laughed when I read this because it reminded me of a music artist who had their album picked up by Cook for distribution and, wanting to impress me that she had an inside track, told me that “Dave” was looking after her marketing, and spoke as if she and “Dave” had talked just that morning.

The “Who’s Dave” motif plays out on the ‘about’ page of the corporate website:

David C. Cook - Who is Dave

David C Cook is a nonprofit organization dedicated to publishing and distributing leadership and discipleship resources to help Christians all over the world grow in their faith and pass it on to the next generation. We call this “DiscipleShaping”. We were established in 1875 by David Caleb Cook in Chicago, IL. Since that time, we have published numerous bestselling books from The Picture Bible to Crazy Love by Francis Chan, developed over ten lines of Sunday school curriculum, and published many of today’s most popular praise and worship songs through our music division, Kingsway.

Read the whole page by clicking here.

In the end, “Dave is a ministry of regular people, like you, with a passion to transform lives around the world.”

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