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Key Branding Lessons From The New Leeds United Badge

Written by Daniel
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In Episode 2 of the Flaunt Digital Industry Spotlight Chris, Lee & Jamie share their thoughts on Leeds United’s new badge design. You can find all the latest episodes on the Flaunt Digital YouTube channel.

See below for the full video transcription.



Jamie: So, first up, we’re going to talk about the Leeds United badge. This has been covered in every single publication in the UK, at least, probably Europe. Basically, what happened was Leeds United just decided to drop a new badge design on the fans, just mid-season, no warning, small consultation of 10,000 people or 1,000 people, I can’t remember. But no one of note seemed to have got consulted, including journalists, etc., and people across the club. This created all kinds of things, it ties into digital marketing. 

Lee: Yeah. I don’t think there was any consultation that got made by anyone that knew anything about branding. I think they picked 1,000 people that were in a pub. It was so bad that Gaviscon sort of trolled them a little bit, took the branding, turned it into their colours, created an ad out of it. The ad has gone viral. So, basically, they capitalized on the back of a really bad design. 

Jamie: Sort of like a man coughing. 

Lee: Yeah. It’s been compared to a white supremacy logo, hasn’t it? I mean, it’s not ideal is it? 

Chris: Who was it? Was it Lineker that coined it originally and compared it to heartburn or something like that?

Lee: Oh, right. I didn’t realize that. 

Jamie: It might have been Gary Lineker, yeah. 

Chris: Yeah. That’s what they were riding off. They were riding off the back of his comment saying that it’s bad enough that it gives me heartburn or something like that. So, then, Gaviscon, obviously, spun that round and were like, “Yes, there’s something in it.”

Jamie: They did well to get on it straight away. It’s pretty important in digital marketing, reactive advertising getting on stuff quick. 

Chris: It’s very reactive. I did wonder, though, do you think there’s going to be, like, any branding concerns or anything like that because they’ve pretty much taken the exact same branding as the Leeds logo, haven’t they? 

Jamie: We’re not using it though. 

Lee: I think the fact that it’s been pulled is probably a good sign that Leeds are not going to use it anymore. They’re going back to the drawing board. But I think for the amount of press coverage that Gaviscon got out of it is worthwhile, isn’t it? Pay your dues. 

Chris: Yeah. I think they’ve completely pulled the ad now. I think…quite a bit of a bad rap for it. 

Lee: I think they put a lot of money behind it, though, because everybody seems to have picked it up. 

Jamie: Yeah. It’s good, you don’t really get brands that do that sometimes. Like Gaviscon, I’ve never heard of them doing any reactive marketing at all, ever. And then they suddenly jump on something. 

Lee: Well, it’s the most mundane brand, Gaviscon, indigestion relief. 

Jamie: Yeah. It’s good. 

Chris: I mean, it’s fun, isn’t it? I mean, I don’t think anybody’s going to, off the back of this, go and buy a load of Gaviscon are they? But I think it raises the profile of the brand a little bit. It makes you sound a little bit fun in that space, obviously, compared to whatever is the next best competitor. 

Lee: Well, it’s one of them things, isn’t it, when you get heartburn, even if it’s a year down the line, you might think, “Oh, that Gaviscon, they’re for heartburn, they did that Leeds thing.” You know, the amount of people that will think of it way, way down the line is probably a long-term benefit. 

Chris: Well, more than anything, it’s noise about the brand, isn’t it? It’s noise. 

Lee: Noise off the back of someone else’s mistake. Cheap noise.

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