Sci-Fi Channel has announced its new name to advertisers at its upfront in New York. The new moniker?
The new tagline: “Imagine Greater”. A 90-second “brand anthem” commercial is being produced by London agency 4 Creative. Another UK agency, Proud Creative, is working on other components of the brand assignment.
Dave Howe, Sci Fi President, explains, “We really do want to own the imagination space. We want to get the credit for the range of content that we already have on our air and that we’ll be doing more of in the future. When we tested this new name, the thing that we got back from our 18-to-34 techno-savvy crowd, which is quite a lot of our audience, is actually this is how you’d text it… We’ll get the heritage and the track record of success, and we’ll build off of that to build a broader, more open and accessible and relatable and human-friendly brand.”
Tim Brooks, who helped launch the network 16 years ago, adds “The name Sci Fi has been associated with geeks and dysfunctional, antisocial boys in their basements with video games and stuff like that, as opposed to the general public and the female audience in particular… We spent a lot of time in the ’90s trying to distance the network from science fiction”.
Sci Fi twitterati and the blogosphere have already lit up. Check out the Twitter-chat and you’ll find some passionate reviews thus far. On a more positive note, Sci Fi is coming off the best year in its history. In primetime it ranked 13th in total viewers among ad-supported cable networks in 2008. It’s a top-10 network in both adults 18 to 49 (up 4%) and adults 25 to 54 (up 6%).
Those who are working directly on the super-secret branding assignment tell me that the best is yet to come (read: innovative & creative STUNTERY soon to come).
The network plans to make the changeover on July 7th. Branding consultancy Landor was commissioned to develop the new name, with SyFy being chosen after 300 different possibilities were presented. International Sci Fi channels will transition to the new name over the next six to 12 months.