Y branding is big news

When an organization unveils a new logo it usually get s a squib on the business page. But this past Tuesday it was big news. I mean BIG news. From Tampa to Enid, OK, to London, UK to Mumbai, it was in practically every daily newspaper and online news feed you can think of. It even made the front page of the New York Times.What was this huge logo news? Does Microsoft have a new window? Apple a new fruit? No the YMCA is now The Y. And what a Y–sleek, forward and so colorful.

The Young Mans Christian Association needed to update its 166-year old moniker to prove the organization and its mission are still relevant. Does the Y really need a new logo and redesigned website to get across that message? After all, Mind, Body and Spirit are never out of fashion. And community, although its definition has evolved, is just as important as ever.

Whether the new logo is good design (I think it’s great and I LOVE the color palette) is really beside the point. What matters is the coverage this particular combination of curves and colors got. If the Y wasn’t relevant; if thousands of communities from ocean-to-ocean didn’t gather at them; if millions of families didn’t rely on the gyms, pools and programs; they could have rebranded themselves at the P and it wouldn’t have gotten a blurb anywhere.

Schifino Lee

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