Juventus Seeks To Go “Beyond Football” With Brand Essence
The rebrand of Juventus comes with a bold update in the brand essence which makes the brand not just a sport brand but also entertainment fans. How can the rebranding of Juventus transform the brand from a sports brand to an entertainment brand?
Change in the football industry is fast, and accelerating. Once a strongly local ritual, it is now a global sector. Once a single live event with media coverage, it is now content that is experienced in a myriad of different ways globally.
We built the Juventus brand based on our vision of football’s future, not our observation of its past. As Silvio pointed out to Wired,
Our message is not really about change as much as it is about understanding of the world around us, with the subsequent need to evolve and widen the brand in different markets and geographies. These elements derive from Juventus’ long-term strategic plan, and the commitment to make it sustainable.
The new identity will need to thrive across tomorrow’s touchpoints, be they digital, spatial, physical, virtual, or augmented.
Influenced by the likes of wearable technology, virtual reality, and mobile entertainment, tomorrow’s fans will have radically different expectations in terms of experiences, and Juventus must be equipped to live up to them.
As CNN reported, “He [Juventus President Andrea Agnelli] told the cognoscenti at the launch: ‘Change before you have to’.”
European football is dominated by shields, crests, ovals, and other devices. There is obviously nothing wrong with these; many come with a glorious story. On the other hand, however, there is no real reason for assuming that a football logotype should conform to this tradition. It’s a case where the norm isn’t driven by design, but design is conforming to the norm.
We saw an opportunity to challenge the convention. As observed by Brand New, “Fans and purists will disagree, but the new logo is excellent, regardless or perhaps specifically for how it breaks from convention and tradition and dares to do something different for this specific category.”
While Juventus holds its legions of fans as its driving force, growth for the Club will also come from other audiences – entertainment enthusiasts who might not be necessarily as interested in football as a sport.
Some of the world’s most valuable brands are relevant to people who aren’t necessarily lovers or users of their products, but share fundamental values with the brands themselves – think of Harley Davidson inspiring the notions of freedom and independence to non-motorcyclists.
Juventus’ challenge is that this can happen in football, too, and this brand evolution is built to sustain that; to make the Juventus DNA – embodied by the “until the end” battle cry and the values of perseverance, ambition, excellence – big in football, but bigger than football. A growth strategy based on enabling people to live the Juventus experience, not merely the Juventus football experience.
As a number of commentators noticed, Juventus’ leap is not merely a visual change—it’s a different way of conceiving the brand. Most football club brands represent something else—be it the team, football, a city or a landmark. Juventus has chosen to represent itself. This shift in perspective is the main reason behind the huge impact of this launch.
In other words, rather than own an identity, Juventus has chosen to be an identity. It has set out to own primary elements such as the black and white stripes and the J letter. Rather than referring to an icon, Juventus has turned itself into an icon, as the world’s greatest brands do.
As an Italian club going abroad, Juventus would have assumed everyone, everywhere to know:
Instead, reasoning as a truly global citizen, Juventus challenged those assumptions.