Design Water Cooler Talks

Rebranding can be painful but always stay proactive instead of reactive.

Steve Norell

November 29, 2012

The new Boise State University logo rolled out this week and the discussion of branding was a popular topic in the office. At Creative Soapbox, we understand the lengthy process and long hours that go into a branding project and although we have an opinion on the new identity, we will keep any positive or negative critiques to least for now. However, the uproar from the community is hard to ignore.

Change is hard to accept and Bronco fans are not too accepting of the new “B” logo. It is fair to say a majority of the criticism is the lack of involvement from the community and students in helping to create the new identity that is supposed to symbolize community. A lesson learned, listen to your audience and involve them in the process, even if it is not in the creation process. A public university is a hard audience to pitch to with new ideas, but making them a part of the change process can be vital to achieving their acceptance.

The process of creating a brand and the decisions that have to be made by following a clear vision are difficult. Communication is key. Your audiences must feel like they’re a part of the process and understand the purpose behind the change. If you lose their trust in a brand, you lose their business. There will always be criticism of a design, even the best of designs face strong criticism. A rule of thumb is, always stay proactive instead of reactive.

To be proactive, take the steps to promote the brand and inform the audience of the benefits and advances that will come. Creating hype and excitement for a brand, previous to an unveiling, can not only involve the community/audience, but also entice them with anticipation for change. Change for a brand can be a great thing as long as it aligns with the purpose and the audience understands that purpose. As for the Boise State University logo, it should “B” an interesting conversation.

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