Friday, October 3, 2014

Major League Soccer's New Brand Logo

It's a new branding era for Major League Soccer. As the 20th season of the league approaches, it wants to signal the next stage in its North American growth. So the boot and ball are gone, replaced by this striking new brand logo that lends itself to team-by-team adaptation. Here's what the MLS's CMO told Sports Illustrated about this latest version of the brand logo:
The more modern brands of the world don’t need to telegraph a specific category or line of business they’re in. In many cases, they stand for something much bigger. A great example of that is Apple.
Not everyone is enamored of the new logo. A Boston Globe writer says: "... while I don’t have a great sense for design, I’m not sure I even like the new logo. But I do find the switch itself interesting. It conveys that MLS, which is calling the rebranding effort ‘MLS NEXT,’ thinks it’s entering a new era."

I definitely agree--MLS is using this modern brand element to reflect its emergence as an established sports league. No longer a startup that has to explain itself over and over, the MLS of today has big-league players, major media coverage, good audience numbers, and marketing confidence.

In fact, MLS has become so good at marketing the game experience that college football is using it as a model.

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