Branded in Carbonear
If you have a product on the market, any product, the very first thing you would want is for it to be instantly and universally recognizable.
The last thing you would need is for it to be ignored, and passed over for a more attractive competitor.
That’s why since Coca-cola first hit the market, companies have been cleverly using brand names, colourful logos, catchy advertising slogans and packaging to attract attention to their wares. And let’s not forget Coca-cola were the people who helped shape our modern day image of Santa.
In an increasingly competitive world, more recently, provinces and towns have been hitching their hopes for recognition and potential new business to the branding bandwagon.
Last week, Carbonear became the latest town to hop on board.
The town’s new logo is comprised of four letter Cs, which merge and overlap. When joined together, they appear to be four abstract circles, which also bear some resemblance to a four-leaf clover. But that’s only our interpretation of it.
The folks who conceived it say it was designed to represent community and partnership. A white space in the centre represents the town itself as the heart or hub of the area. A tiny green square at the top of the b in the word, Carbonear, is intended to represent growth. Inspired by the legendary Irish Princess Sheila Nageira’s hair colour, the logo uses gold to also reflect the town’s warm, sunny personality.
Townspeople may have already noticed the new brand on one of the town’s fleet of vehicles.
But aside from the people who actually designed it, it’s a safe bet very few would be able to repeat the above explanation if asked by a visitor to their town.
That’s perfectly understandable. Like anything ‘ brand’ new, it’s going to take a while for the new logo to catch on.
And let’s face it, not everyone is going to be as “excited” about it as council. Some will like it. Others may even love it. And then there may be those who will loathe it and consider it a costly abomination.
It is human nature to resist change from the familiar tried and true coat of arms. And most things new and different are often wide open to misinterpretation and ridicule.
Remember the flaps over the then new Maple Leaf flag in the 1960s; the new provincial flag and the pitcher plant, which the province adopted as its new brand? Have you heard anything about them lately? As important as it is for a logo to be distinctive and recognizable, you can’t expect a logo as fresh out of its wrapper as Carbonear’s to be recognized or even understood immediately. It’s going to take time.
The town’s new logo will never become as widely recognizable as the golden arches or the Colonel’s white goatee.
And even if it’s not love at first sight for you, given time, who knows, it may grow on you, just like Mr. Pearson’s new Canadian flag, Christopher Pratt’s provincial banner and the pitcher plant.