The City of Los Angeles Marathon


The City of Los Angeles Marathon ranks among the premier marathons in the United States. One of the largest marathons in the country, it features more live entertainment per mile than any other race in the world (85 performing groups) and regularly draws more than one million spectators.


In previous years, the event failed to establish a unique Brand Identity and needed an overhaul that gave the brand a fresh appeal and new energy. To make matters even more challenging, the client had a smaller media budget than in previous years. As the City of Los Angeles Bike Tour was linked to the marathon’s marketing and communications efforts, this event also needed rebranding.


Creating a simple and bold new Brand Identity that was both striking and unforgettable, HOW CREATIVE used form, function, structure, and color across all applications, from city bus signs to street banners to the awards ceremony, for its rebranding campaign.

The typography for the event dates, which was bright yellow against a sky-blue background, was increased to read easily at a distance; stylized illustrations of runners reflected the high-energy yet laid-back vibe of the event. With more than 25 Authentic Touchpoints (applications) of the brand icon and design, the biggest challenge was creating an integrated campaign; HOW CREATIVE achieved this by keeping the concept simple, bold, and memorable.


Thanks to HOW CREATIVE’s strikingly innovative rebranding, the LA Marathon enjoyed a significant boost in brand value, business revenues, and tighter community bonds. The simple yet bold new design, easily perceptible on vehicle wraps within 1.3 seconds, significantly increased brand awareness and proved to be the key factor in attracting a record number of runners, attendees, and event vendors.

With entertainment venues for the more than 85 performing groups along the route, the marathon proved to be a city-wide celebration. The sold-out event drew 23,000 participants and a record-breaking crowd and proved to be the largest and most successful marathon in its 15-year history.