From July 7th, the Sci-Fi channel will be renamed Syfy, together with a new logo and tagline “Imagine Greater” in an attempt to pull in more mainstream audience (read: non-geek general public and female audience). Phonetically identical, it aims to position the brand for future growth by creating an ownable trademark that can travel easily with consumers across new media and non-linear digital platforms, new international channels and extend into new business ventures under the Syfy Ventures banner, such as Syfy Games, Syfy Films and Syfy Kids.

The names were developed by an internal team at Sci Fi along with Landor Associates, a corporate and brand identity consultancy and went through 300 possibilities before selecting Syfy. The rebranding of an established name is always tricky. Like I’ve said before, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. I can’t wait to see how this turns out.

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Updated 30th March – Ken Runkel, the Executive Director of Landor has this to say about the rebranding:

“As reported in last week’s New York Times, the SCI FI Channel, a division of NBC Universal, introduced its new name and identity, Syfy, at upfront presentations in New York. The announcement got a lot of attention, and although the New York Times story seemingly gave Landor credit for the work—we can’t take it—because we didn’t do it.

Yes, we worked with the Sci Fi Channel, and it hired us to consult on the project. However, Syfy was a name generated internally and pre-tested at the channel before our involvement. Once Landor was involved, we explored new names as part of the process, but it was the Channel’s call to go with Syfy.”

Consulting? Wasn’t this a rebranding project? Hmmm….

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