The most overwhelming aspect about developing a new image for a pro sports team is recognizing the tremendous influence the logos, colors and uniforms have on fans, and the players who wear them. Symbolic of the passion and loyalty the fans and players have for their teams, these logos represent the team’s greatest asset – their identity.
Of equal significance is the host of application, design, manufacturing and legal hurdles that require a deft level of understanding and expertise in order to navigate to a successful branding solution, especially in the digital era.
I had the responsibility of leading the development of 16 NFL club identities, as well as 8 new team logos and uniforms for Vince McMahon’s short-lived XFL. These assignments required guiding multi-functional teams through considerable research, design interpretation, legal clearances, and focus group study. Each assignment had to pass subjective and objective criteria of the team owners, attorneys, players, networks, licensees, and fans, before the final trademarks were selected.
Professional sports logos are arguably the most extensively dispersed graphics on the world-wide-web today. These marks are viewed and shared by millions everyday on every conceivable app and digital device available from mobile phones, tablets and PCs with a need to be clearly legible when viewed as small as a Twitter icon or when projected across a huge stadium Jumbotron.
When executed properly these logos generate tremendous annual revenue for the team owners, evoking strong brand ties across every conceivable media platform.