Butterfly mural at Hillside Winery in Sevierville

Murals are more popular now than ever before, and businesses are cashing in on the trend. A mural or a photo backdrop is a fun way to promote your brand and get customers excited about visiting your establishment.

There are many pros and only a few cons of adding a mural or photo backdrop to your building. Does adding a mural sound like a good idea for your business? It may be time to get in on the trend!

Get Creative with Public Relations

The Pros

Butterfly mural at Mill Bridge Cider House in Pigeon Forge, TN.
Photo courtesy of Mill Bridge Cider House

We find numerous positive aspects of this trend. First, a mural or an attractive photo opportunity draws attention to your brand. Plus, it enhances the decor and atmosphere of your establishment.

Furthermore, it will entice your guests to capture a photo during their visit. This strengthens the connection guests make when they visit your business and elevates the relationship between them and you. It’s like giving customers a souvenir to remember you by!

Beyond that, we are living in a world of selfies, sharing, and social media. You can count on guests showing off their photos for their loved ones to see. This is an organic form of marketing, and it can be more effective than traditional streams.

Rocky Top Wine Trail Partnered with Local Artist Pinkie Mistry

Mill Bridge Cider House in Pigeon Forge and Hillside Winery in Sevierville, both stops along the Rocky Top Wine Trail, commissioned local artist Pinkie Mistry to paint murals at each property.

“It was a fun experience to partner with the Rocky Top Wine Trail, and I’ve always enjoyed working with the team. They give me the chance to be as creative as I want, which as an artist is valuable,” Mistry spoke.

Murals act as a bridge between the business and art community, and partnerships like this benefit both sides. Relationships like this support local artists and bolster business. We see this backdrop appear in the business’ advertising and social media content, and we also see tagged photos from guests. The wine trail’s social media manager Katie Hart elaborated on how the murals contribute to the guest experience.

“The butterfly murals at Hillside Winery and Mill Bridge Hard Cider Company serve as vibrant and interactive additions to our businesses. More so now than ever, guests are looking for that Instagrammable shot wherever they go, and these murals provide just that,” Hart explained. “It’s also a great way to foster support for the community and its local artists.”

The Cons

The cons of adding a mural to your business are few, but cost is the main factor. Pricing for murals depends on the size and scope of the project, and rates vary from artist to artist.

Another area to consider is upkeep. Exterior murals are subject to the elements. Artists may use a protective topcoat over their artwork to combat weathering, like Mistry applies to her exterior murals.

“I use an anti-graffiti clear coat on my outdoor murals. It is a UV protectant and lasts approximately 25 years,” Mistry explained.

Integrate Local Art into your Brand with a Mural

The Kellum Creek Business Solutions team at Hard Rock Cafe in Pigeon Forge.
Kellum Creek Business Solutions team at Hard Rock Cafe in Pigeon Forge

Hiring an artist and developing a plan will look different for each business, artist, and project.

The team at Hard Rock Cafe in Pigeon Forge worked with local artist Megan Lingerfelt last year to install a mural inside the restaurant. The project certainly elevated the entryway of the business and gave guests a backdrop for photos, but it also highlighted the brand’s appreciation for the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Lingerfelt and team members from Hard Rock Cafe partnered to develop a design that incorporated the vibe of the national park. Wildflowers and rhinestones resembling fireflies married aspects of the Hard Rock brand and the Smoky Mountains.

This meaningful approach resulted in a breathtaking mural that not only represents the brand well but also celebrates the Smoky Mountain community. Integrating art into your brand’s image is a meaningful way to support your local community and its artists.

Get Creative with Public Relations

Kellum Creek Business Solutions was pleased to partner with Hard Rock Cafe in Pigeon Forge for public relations services during this project. View the press release here.

Murals in the Smoky Mountains

Wings of Wander Butterfly mural in downtown Sevierville
Photo credit: Amy Morton

Mistry also painted the “Wings of Wander” butterfly mural in Downtown Sevierville. This now famous mural lures visitors for souvenir selfies and has contributed to the success of the historic district’s revitalization. This was the first of many murals in Sevierville. The trend continued and now visitors can find numerous murals throughout Sevierville, Pigeon Forge, and Gatlinburg. Find more local murals here.

Should your business add a mural? If your setting isn’t suitable for an actual mural, get creative by crafting a fun backdrop or photo-worthy spot. Your guests will appreciate the opportunity to remember their visit with a fun photo. Plus, the organic marketing reach might be worth the effort.

If your business needs public relations assistance like event management or press release writing and distribution, contact us to get started. Let’s chat about campaign creation, events, and other creative ways to strengthen your brand. Also, sign up for our free quarterly newsletter to learn more about local businesses, trends, and our wonderful community.

Authored in Appalachia || Amy Morton