National Geographic, continuing to plot a new course in the 21st Century Fox era, Wednesday unveiled the most extensive rebrand in its 128-year history.
The centerpiece is the new tagline “Further,” which will be used on TV channels, websites, apps, the print magazine and consumer products. Additional changes include ditching the word “Channel” on the TV side in all 171 countries where they appear and the inclusion of an on-screen “index” featuring text and graphics sliding horizontally across the screen during promos and interstitials.
Execs, including National Geographic Channels CEO Courteney Monroe, discussed the strategy behind the rebrand during a briefing with reporters on the observation level atop the World Trade Center.
“We started with our brand mission and ethos," Monroe said of the rebrand process. "What drives us, what’s at the heart of everything we do. And that is to explore—not just for the sake of adventure, but to further our understanding of the world.”
The event was a graphic designer’s delight, with senior VP of global strategy and branding Emanuele Madeddu joking that he would deliver a “lecture about fonts.” He did, in fact, reveal the font choice (Verlag) and talked about the “negative space” deployed in the new materials.
The new look will roll out at 9 p.m. ET on Nov. 14 when Mars, National Geographic’s ambitious Ron Howard-directed hybrid scripted-unscripted series, makes its debut.
In 2015, National Geographic and Fox entered into a new partnership, which saw Fox pay $725 million to increase its stake to 73% of the new for-profit media side of Nat Geo. Its society, which supports a range of education, science and conservation causes, remains a separate, not-for-profit entity that benefits from the media partnership.