In July, USA Today underwent a redesign. (For the rest of this blog post, I’ll try to avoid the phrase “rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic”.)
But while we could talk alot about the news / journalism implications of the redesign and even how the print design is meant to evoke more of a web feel, I’m stuck on the new “logo” (use “airquotes”)…
USA Today’s new logo — a large circle in colors corresponding to the sections — will be an infographic that changes with the news, containing a photo or image that represents key stories of the day.
This “evolving logo, but not a logo” idea was tried by AOL back in 2009. Basic business lesson: Don’t copy AOL ideas.
While logo does not equal brand, the logo is the main visual anchor of a brand. Visual brand identity does need to evolve with the brand, but it needs to be a gradual process, not a daily one.
The USA Today’s troubles run deeper than the logo. What if hotels stopped dumping them at guests’ doors? Circulation would go down by 97%.
Seriously, the USA Today still has the same 2 major brand problems it’s had since 1982. It’s a McPaper about a mile wide and an inch deep and it’s owned by Gannett.
In the end, I guess the real reason I’m a little disappointed in the redesign because it’s no longer “delivered by satellite” (cause that’s SO high-tech).