Caffeinated ideas and views on marketing communications


Thoughts about a rebranding

You’ve probably heard of the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure, right? Well it doesn’t exist anymore. It changed its name to the Susan G. Komen GLOBAL Race for the Cure.  This is the second year I participated and I think the rebranding is bogus and confusing. From a marketing perspective I understand why they would do it. After all, now they are able to call it the “first ever” global Race.  But that is BS. It is not the first Race and anyone who has ever participated knows that.

What this rebranding accomplish? Not much that I can tell. In fact, this year the Race here in the Washington DC area had fewer participants (45,000 vs. 50,000 last year) and raised less money.  Last year, Cynthia Nixon and Condoleeza Rice addressed the participants, and participated in the Race. Also, Mayor Adrian Fenty raced. This year, the only “celebrities” were Jill Biden and her husband.

In any case, I think that any established cause or organization needs to carefully evaluate what it aims to get from a rebranding. Is it worth the cost? Is it worth the confusion?

Ultimately, I felt that the “Global” Race for the Cure was very disorganized compared to last year. I did not feel appreciated for raising money or participating and I don’t think I will participate next year. And I did not get that it was global in nature (other than the very long and ridiculous speech by some “royal” from Bosnia). In fact the whole point of Komen is to raise funds for the LOCAL community.

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About Deborah Brody

Deborah Brody writes and edits anything related to marketing communications. Most blog posts are written under the influence of caffeine.

Getting religious about branding

Seriously. This isn’t about working all night on the re-branding project, it’s about what certain words connote in a religious context. Apparently, the Alexandria. VA-based Baptist Temple was suffering from dwindling membership. What did they resolve to do? Hold a membership drive? No! Re-brand the church. See, apparently the name “Baptist Temple” carries bad or unclear connotations. Baptist is tied to the far right conservative movement, and this church is progressive. And temple? Well, apparently that made this place sound hippy-dippy.  So, they pastor begged his flock to rename the church and the new name is…Commonwealth Baptist Church. They didn’t stop there. With true branding and marketing savvy, they will add a tagline, which has not been chosen yet but may be something like “A Progressive Community of Faith.”

Read the whole Washington Post article for more information. This is such a great example of how a name can make all the difference. It goes back to what I was saying before about perception. I find it interesting that the pastor in this church thought that by changing their name, they would literally save their church. I will be interested to see if it does make a difference.

About Deborah Brody

Deborah Brody writes and edits anything related to marketing communications. Most blog posts are written under the influence of caffeine.


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