Building a Trustworthy Brand
As a partner in the Lexington branding agency Bullhorn Creative, Will Coffman has worked with many of Kentucky’s most recognized brands – including God’s Pantry Food Bank, Waterfront Park and Lextran – helping them tap into what they do best to maximize their community impact.
He therefore has a unique perspective when considering KET and its impact.
“KET’s story is Kentucky’s story: It’s about people coming together to accomplish a goal and lift up the state,” Coffman said. “As a brand, KET has always stood for something that’s good and something that people trust. I think it’s powerful that KET’s educational mission is just as strong now as it was when it was founded, if not stronger.”
Coffman first became acquainted with KET as a young child. Although his parents discouraged their children from watching television in general, they made an exception for KET, allowing him and his sister to enjoy Sesame Street and Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood.
“The educational part of KET was very important to my parents,” he added. “I think they recognized that KET’s children’s programs passed along good life lessons, whether about sharing, being considerate of those who are different from you or just caring for your whole community. When I look back, Mister Rogers played a foundational part of my life. Even as an adult, I still find myself getting emotional about some of the things I learned from him.”
Growing up in Lexington, Coffman’s family fostered an interest in civics and government. His father was a dentist, and his mother was the first female U.S. district judge in Kentucky.
KET does a great job telling Kentucky’s story in modern, effective ways.Will Coffman
Bullhorn Creative, partner
As Coffman grew older, and he became a student of Kentucky’s political history, he gravitated to KET for a new reason: its public affairs coverage.
“On election night, KET was always on in our home,” Coffman said. “It was always so interesting and exciting. And as I’ve gotten older, KET’s election coverage has become an instrumental part of my life, something I look forward to each year.”
Working in Washington, D.C, after college, Coffman said he sought out KET’s online streams to stay on top of what was happening in Kentucky’s elections and public affairs.
“I’ve always appreciated KET’s approach to its public affairs programs because it allows for honest discussion,” he said. “It seems like so many national news networks are more about having two people take extreme positions and shout across the table at each another. But with KET, you’re not getting those emotional histrionics. And I love what Renee Shaw brings to the conversation, allowing everyone’s perspective to be heard. It’s refreshing and makes for a much more rewarding experience.”
Coffman said he also appreciates that KET regularly produces historical documentaries about Kentucky and notable Kentuckians, such as Wendell Ford: From Yellow Creek to the Potomac, one of his personal favorites, as well as others on figures such as Daniel Boone, Harry Caudill and William T. Young.
“KET does a great job telling Kentucky’s story in modern, effective ways,” Coffman said. “No other network is producing these kinds of feature-length productions about Kentucky. And it’s one of the reasons I keep coming back to KET.”