London: The Brand

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London’s Mayor Boris Johnson and his team have allocated a budget of £600,000 to create a new logo and identity for the city as a way to build Londonís image both in the UK and overseas ahead of the 2012 Olympics. The Mayorís office is inviting agencies to tender for four contracts related to the new identity; one of which being London-based agency Moving Brands. I’ve been following their recent, unorthodox project which involves making their pitch process fully available to the general public as a way of documenting and revealing the design process – as well as taking on board ideas from the prime target audience. Namely the general population of London. Readers / interviewees can follow the design team’s thoughts and possible solutions and offer constructive feedback on the ongoing pitch blog:

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Certainly a fresh and unexpected approach and I think it’s indicative of how confident, moreso than naive, that Moving Brands must be as a competing agency to reveal their works in progress to the rest of the world – or indeed the potential client, before it is approved. As a designer, and someone not involved in the pitch, I find it to be an sinsightful project – and I’m admittedly hooked to see how it will develop. But it begs the question of whether it is innovative or infact a clever publicity stunt? Do Moving Brands REALLY think that gettng the public involved to the extent of submitting designs (some of which are actually pretty clever) will help them meet the requirements of the brief? Maybe so. Maybe this is a trial run on the part of Moving Brands? Maybe that is the point? If so, and if it works, what if this is the start of a soon-to-be-trend? I wonder how this will effect the industry in general, specifically with regard to those sketchy areas such as rightful ownership and tackling plagiarism? So far I haven’t seen or heard of any coverage of this on the net and I’d like to hear what other people in the industry think.

2 Comments »

  1. James Chae says:

    branding as net-based reality show. interesting.

    i am on the fence about this approach as well. on one hand — it’s democratic and a good attempt at being honest. however, it makes me nervous b/c it’s inviting a whole host of cooks into the kitchen.

    we’ll see. i trust london’s taste.

  2. [...] touched on the dubious phenomenon of crowdsourcing and of course the infamous London branding exercise last year by moving brands, but with regard to businesses embracing social marketing as a means to [...]

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