Branding a sports team seems like a unique process, unlike a commerce company that is selling a product or service to a target audience, sports teams are a social and competitive enterprise that relies on support from local communities for survival. A lot of sports teams are well established and have gotten there brand, name and logo from historical context and heritage. This means that creating the brand for a new team without that historical heritage poses a challenge, and will rely on trying to create that connection with a fanbase and community. Local football teams here in the UK are intrinsically tied with the location they play often named directly after the town or city they play in, and logos derived from local landmarks or historical cultural heritage. They are most supported by the people that live in close proximity to the teams location with larger more successful teams spreading their fanbase wider. This means that the visuals of the brand don’t matter as much as the message and perception by the fanbase. Many of the UK’s football teams logos are not well designed by todays standards and trends but they work well to convey the place and community of people the team represents, using culturally important imagery.
The NFL on the other hand is as I’ve mentioned previously more corporate in nature and this can be felt with it’s teams logos and brands. Unlike the UK’s football teams not all the NFL teams are playing in the location they where originally founded and many have moved locations multiple times. This means that a lot of the names and logos aren’t linked to the locations they represent. Some teams were named with their location in mind, like the Pittsburgh Steelers who are named after the large steel industry in Pittsburgh as well as the Green Bay Packers who were named after the local meat packing company that helped found them. This means that a potential UK based franchise wouldn’t need to have it’s brand be linked to the location but given the context of how UK sports teams are organised it may help create a stronger appeal for it to be a uniquely UK team.
I’m Aidan Moore, a Graphic Design student at University Centre St Helens.
Any questions or queries, get in touch in the following ways.
Based in St Helens, Merseyside, UK