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Everton unveils new badge chosen by fans

Graphic Design

Posted by Patrick Burgoyne, 3 October 2013, 10:49    Permalink    Comments (19)

Following widespread outcry over the introduction of its current club crest in May, Everton has unveiled a new badge, chosen via an online poll of supporters, which will be adopted for the 2014/15 season

In May this year, Everton announced a redesign of its club crest, to be introduced at the beginning of the current season. As we reported at the time, the club went to some lengths to explain the thinking of the in-house team which designed the new look but many fans were deeply unhappy with the new design.

The Everton crest introduced at the start of the 2013/14 season

 

The crest used from 2000 to 2013

 

 

Evolution of the Everton crest

 

In response to sustained criticism from fans, the club conducted a consultation process as a first step to finding an acceptable replacement for the new badge. As reported on the club's website, what fans most objected to about the new design was the fact that it the club motto Nil Satis Nisi Optimum had been dropped and the distinctive Prince Rupert's tower redrawn.

According to the club, fans felt that "The Tower should reflect the heritage and design from previous Crests - especially the 1991 (60% preferred) and 1938 (24%) versions, reflecting not a photographic representation of the real Tower, but the heritage of previous Club Crests and the dreams and aspirations of supporters. As one person put it: "The Tower has been idolised forever, why change that now?" As another put it, "The Tower is Everton's equivalent of Arsenal's canon"."

Fans also made it clear that "Nil Satis Nisi Optimum is a non-negotiable inclusion for the future Club Crest. Whilst the majority are ambivalent about it appearing in a scroll as in previous crests, it must be written in full and in Latin, and not be dumbed-down and weakened through abbreviation."

Other elements deemed important were the club name, laurel wreaths, and founding date. "Whilst many supporters feel passionate about the inclusion of 1878 and the Laurel Wreaths, these two elements were ranked lowest overall in the survey and so have become regarded as secondary elements, with less support from participants in the consultation," the club reported.

The next stage was to work with design consultancy Kenyon Fraser to present fans with three options to choose from.

Option A (shown here as applied to a club shirt) was close to the 1991-2000 version, featured all the elements deemed important by fans and dropped the amber accent colour used previously.

 

Option B retained more of the feel of the current crest, and the amber accent, but with the addition of the motto

 

Option C introduced a redrawn shield

 

Option A (shown below as it will appear at the ground) was the clear winner with 78% of the votes of the 20,000 fans who took part in the exercise.

 

The new badge in reverse

Main version

 

So what are the lessons here for designers? If you are going to consult, make sure you ask the right people the right questions and you ask enough of them to give you a credible result would be one obvious conclusion.

In our original post on this story, we praised the fact that the club had attempted to consult with fans and had been open about the process. However, it is clear that that process was flawed as it failed to identify key elements in the previous design which fans felt a particular attachment to - the motto and the way in which the tower was rendered. Although the new version of the tower was more accurate, the club's more extensive survey following the outcry revealed that fans felt that "The Tower should reflect the heritage and design from previous Crests – especially the 1991 (60% preferred) and 1938 (24%) versions, reflecting not a photographic representation of the real Tower, but the heritage of previous Club Crests and the dreams and aspirations of supporters." Emotional attachment was far more important than accuracy. The old drawing of the tower may bear little resemblance to how it actually looks but that wasn't the point - it was the image which people felt an attachment to not the building itself. Likewise, the club had failed to realise the importance to fans of the club's Latin motto.

So have Everton ended up with a better club crest as a result of all this? The trite answer is, well if that's what the fans want, then yes. Personally I think it has more authority than the current badge and it expresses the heritage and values of the club better. The shield is a better shape, dropping the amber makes it feel more classy but the type on the motto is awful.

Whatever your feelings on the new design v the old, this whole episode provides a fascinating case study on the power of logos, the difficulties of making change, how (or how not) to consult with fans (or consumers), the way in which we imbue graphic symbols with deep meaning, the role of social media in the relationship between an organisation and those it serves (or its customers) and the role of the designer.

19 Comments

Fans rightly hold onto their heritage, so bringing back the latin is fine. Re-introducing the scrolls was not necessary, making it less clinical for TV/ online. Option B with re-sized text would have got my vote. Nevertheless, a difficult brief for the design team who did a great job first-time around.
donleavy
2013-10-03 12:22:56


I'm sure one of the supporters' nephews is pretty good at art, he's doing an A-level you know, maybe he could have a go at drawing a new crest?
Josh
2013-10-03 12:26:13


You wouldn't let the fans pick your starting XI.
You wouldn't let the fans apportion your budget for the year.
You wouldn't let the fans run your marketing department.

Why does buying a season ticket give you a say in the operational goings on of the club?

The people in charge of the club, with substantial financial and personal investment in the club made a decision for what they thought was best, to the derision of a handful of people who align themselves with the club in no more specific terms than being a 'fan'.

The people in charge need to have faith in their decisions and their chosen direction as they are those best placed to evaluate.
Carol
2013-10-03 12:33:37


What about that sponsor though? Looks great!
John D
2013-10-03 12:43:58


Mmmmm....
*rubs chin and ponders why design by committee never seems to work*
A M
2013-10-03 13:40:07


I think I like the 1920 one best. Still, well done Everton for changing your logo. Is there a "Logo of The Year" competition or something? I don't watch football.
Alex Morris
2013-10-03 14:12:49


it is much better
James Nelson
2013-10-03 14:22:11


Totally agree with Carol, I also made this point on the everton forum. We've ended up with a designed by committee badge, and it's ainfully obvious.
Liam Potter
2013-10-03 15:05:34


Sad that the design was effectively dictated largely by people without any qualifications in it. Popularity doesn't equal quality whether it's design, film, fashion, music, tv or anything else for that matter.
Matt G
2013-10-03 15:56:30


It looks like an owl
Sean Coleman
2013-10-03 16:01:26


Yahoo !?
Shouldn't the research have been done at the beginning into what the fans liked about their current logo?
Failing that, they'd have got used to it eventually.
Side by Side Creative
2013-10-03 16:15:26


smart
Joe Baglow
2013-10-03 17:52:07


A major improvement on the re-designed predecessor - I'm usually averse to design by committee, especially something as crude as a public voting system, but I can't wholly fault the results, so credit to the designers who made the elements work.

The cool blue and white tonal reduction [sans yellow] is immediately refreshing, classical and elegant, I absolutely love the modernist shield - especially the pointed bottom that reflects into a pointed ribbon, a standard graphic too to direct the eye, in this case, down to the motto.

The irony is that this new design is almost identical to the 1938 crest - which has that elegant pointed shield bottom / ribbon - and I wish they'd used the illustration of the clocktower from this rendition with the centered window. It also has a more even coiling of tile-brickwork from the spire to the column down, which is visually more balanced.

The typography feels a bit mismatched, from the traditional serif Everton to the modernist, san serif motto -I wonder if the serif font would have worked better there?

Great job overall though given the circumstances.
Salahuddin al-Hanbali
2013-10-03 20:01:46


Produced in Word.
Jon
2013-10-04 08:17:54


Minefield trying to re-design a football badge. Football fans are a fickle lot anyway - trying to change the image of their club will cause riot, as was seen.

Quite a safe design, but I imagine that's what it took to keep the masses happy.
Side by Side
2013-10-04 10:13:05


This whole situation is a farce.

Next the fans will say they don't like the team Roberto Martinez is picking so they'll give the fans the option of 3 teams to choose from before each game.
Mark Ford
2013-10-04 14:00:16


Whilst I'd agree that design by committee is a less than ideal production process, I think completely ignoring the views of fans, first time around was also a pretty stupid move. I'm not a particular fan of football, but even I realise that there is a substantial emotional investment by generations of fans into a club and the owners need to take this on board. It's not as simple as treating it just like another product.

The thing that I find utterly hilarious about this whole exercise is that this is yet another design cock-up (and they just keep coming time after time after time) by a group of overpaid and inept designers. Anyone remember the disastrous and extremely expensive Consignia re-brand?

As long as there are clients who have no grasp of what they actually need, there will be designers who are willing to exploit this to sell them something that they don't (aided by a whole bunch of 'account handlers' delivering BS in the style of a sales pitch). And when the client finds that they need to re-brand the re-brand they'll happily come out with even more sales BS to take even more money off them to actually get the bloody thing done right.

Some might say they should have done this the first time around of course. I'm sure this is completely uncharitable. It's also true.
Michael Preston
2013-10-05 04:42:36


Michael – the whole design process was done in-house.
J
2013-10-07 14:30:39


Football badges are just generally shit though aren't they. Even I know that and I don't even watch football. I did get a football stuck up my bum though once.
Football mad dave from dundee
2013-10-07 15:00:38


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