Brand building or brand segmentation? LaLiga hives off ElClasico with its own visual id

September 15 – Brand identity gurus will tell you that ‘look and feel’ must be consistent and rigorously enforced across the whole property all the time. So LaLiga’s decision to create a special logo and brand identity for EIClasico is intriguing.

LaLiga has made significant gains in international markets selling the whole league and ‘brand Spain’ to broadcasters and sponsors. Its two giant clubs – Barcelona and Real Madrid – are part of the league and a key element of LaLiga’s brand, even if they do seem at times to be a league and brands apart.

The decision to create a special visual identity for their clashes in LaLiga seems to emphasise that. It is a particularly interesting – perhaps confusing – branding move when taking into account that both clubs are currently in conflict with the league over the final manoeuvres of the failed European Super League, and LaLiga’s recent capital raise via selling off a stake in its commercial business.

LaLiga, perhaps overselling ElClasico as the world’s most iconic club match (there are a lot of other iconic rivalries around the world that arguably generate more fan passion and as much interest), says “the branding project’s aim is to reflect the DNA of what this legendary encounter symbolises: rivalry, strength, passion, technology, innovation, dynamism, entertainment and globality.”

What the new identity will do is give LaLiga another asset to moentise. LaLiga maintains it will “enhance the brand value of its competition and its clubs, which can be featured at all international events and activations held around this match as part of Laliga’s internationalisation strategy.”

Laliga said it will similarly look at rebranding other ‘iconic’ league matches, including El Gran Derbi, El Derbi de Madrid, El Derbi Vasco, “among others”.

The logo will launch with the next EIClasico to be played in October and will be implemented across all media outlets and actions that Laliga rolls out.

The new design of EIClasico’s identity is described as a “groundbreaking, young, exciting, football-loving, and visual image that will connect with a global audience and especially among a young demographic. Its style is reminiscent of the digital environments popular among younger audiences and their passion for eSports, TV shows and urban culture. A visual identity that conveys not only the today, but also the tomorrow of a great sporting and entertainment show that brings the world to a standstill for 90 minutes.”

Hopefully any brand confusion won’t bring the players to a standstill.

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