Launched in 1984, A&E (originally Arts & Entertainments) has grown from a fuddy-duddy channel with a niche viewership to a reality TV powerhouse in the late oughts to a surprisingly contemporary purveyor of original programming today. Its current roster of Bates Motel, Duck Dynasty, and Storage Wars among other shows has made A&E one of the best representatives of the cable TV revolution. In 2008 it updated its logo, reported here, and has since maintained it well while changing tag lines that reflect its programming. The last one, “Be Original”, announced in October started to get air time in early December along with a new on-air look and overall identity upgrade by Los Angeles, CA-based Troika.
A full case study with additional images and explanations can be found on Troika’s site.
“As the A&E brand continues to evolve, it has become increasingly important to let both the consumer and trade know what A&E stands for,” said Guy Slattery, Executive Vice President of Marketing, A&E Network. “A&E is a brand that celebrates originality. Our content is 100% original, our talent is completely one-of-a-kind and our storytelling is innovative and always fresh.”
I will have to admit that I don’t watch enough live TV to know what the previous A&E on-air look looked like so I don’t really have a point of comparison but I do know a good thing when I see it. This new identity is a well cooked mix of fresh ingredients that taste both serious and quirky. There is a very interesting mix of polished and gauche — I mean that in a positive way! — finishes to everything from the typography to the textures to the live-action shots of the actors that give the identity a fresh, unexpected vibe. A job well done and nicely presented.
Thanks to The Branding Source for the tip.