Even if you do not know anything about sports, you will undoubtedly be able to recognize a number of the most popular sports logos. Teams like the New York Yankees, the Dallas Cowboys, the New York Knicks, and the Los Angeles Lakers are all instantly recognizable around the world.
The logos of the most iconic American sports teams have not only increased brand awareness regarding the team but, in many cases, they have actually tangibly increased the particular team’s value. Below are a few examples of the top teams, and an exploration of why some logos prove to be so popular.
The Top Teams and their Logos
There are a number of logos for teams that are instantly recognizable because they have infiltrated the world of pop culture. If you do not know anything about sports, you may not be able to say for certain which sport the New York Giants or Los Angeles Rams play, but you will likely be able to recognize the team’s logo.
The most popular and iconic sports logos are typically the most popular because the teams they are associated with are some of the oldest or most successful teams in America, or they are based in large cities. The oldest and most successful teams have had the time and resources to develop their logo and their logo-wearing fan bases.
The emotional and psychological connections which people make with logos should not be underestimated either. The teams which are based in large cities also have a leg up on their competitors when it comes to logo popularity because there are often more fans in the geographical area near the team. Additionally, people – consciously or subconsciously – associate the particular logo with the city. Nostalgia, emotional ties to a city, and aspirations to return to a particular city all play a role in the popularity of team logos.
The Search for the Perfect Logo
Every team is desperate to create the best logo possible and, if possible, to avoid any and all controversy when it comes to logos. It is difficult to create a good logo, much less an iconic one that stands the test of time – this is why marketing agencies are paid so well! However, the good news is that fans typically do not mind if a team slightly updates its logo here and there in the pursuit of the perfect logo.
One example of excellent branding and logo design in the sports industry is the World Sports Network logo. This comprehensive online guide to sports and all things sports betting has a logo that encompasses the spirit of professional sports and the excitement of sports betting. Just like the ESPN logo, the WSN logo is slightly italicized to create the impression that it is running towards something or in motion. The logo also looks slightly weathered or mud-splattered, giving the impression of rough and tumble sports such as football.
The Seattle Supersonics – a Case Study
The Seattle Supersonics is an interesting team to look at because the team – and their logo – really only became an iconic brand in Seattle after the team left and moved to Oklahoma. The Supersonics, or Sonics as they are called in Seattle, was a professional basketball team that was not very popular in the city, and which had a new stadium to play in. When the team demanded another new stadium and the city said no, the Sonics decided to pick up and move to Oklahoma, where they rebranded as the Oklahoma City Thunder.
The Oklahoma City Thunder logo certainly leaves a lot to be desired. However, what is interesting is the fact that the Sonics’ team brand became immensely popular in Seattle only after the team left for Oklahoma. The logo – for a long-defunct team – is incredibly popular in Seattle and you will often find people wearing Sonics jerseys who were not even born yet when the Sonics left the city.
So, why is this story interesting, and can it tell us anything about why some logos increase a team’s value? It is difficult to say, but it seems like the Sonics logo and brand grew in popularity because it suddenly had a compelling narrative behind it.
Seattleites who never showed any interest in the team could suddenly feel a sense of longing, nostalgia, and betrayal as if they had been robbed, stabbed in the back, and abandoned. The logo is now synonymous with a sort of Seattle nostalgia that has grown beyond anything the actual team meant to the city.
Sports Logo History is a community of sports logo enthusiast who enjoys the history of each team’s logo history. Sports Logo History has primary logos, alternate logos, wordmark logos, or concept logos from the NFL, NBA, MLB, MLS, NHL, Premier League, WNBA, CFL, NCAA, ABA, USFL, AAF, and XFL.
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