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August 24, 2007

CBS Sportsline Brand Name Finally Benched; CBSsports.com a No Hitter

CBS Sportsline name has been replaced by CBSSports.com.

Bad move, guys.

sportsline.gif The Sportsline company name goes back to 1994 and was finally acquired by CBS in 2004. The name hung on until now because, apparently, CBS was worried about "harming its fantasy football operations."

CBS' association with the Sportsline brand name came about when "CBS launched head first into the dot-com craze and ramped up its online efforts." Killing it, allows CBS to (finally) implement a unified brand name strategy by simplifying its branding across all platforms.

Well, sort of.

I would say that the CBSSports.com name should be shortened to CBS Sports. Adding the dot com is redundant.

CBSsports.gif We get it. I like sports. I like watching sports. I know there's an ESPN.com.

When I think of brand names, I just think ESPN. And www.cbssports.com is prone to errors in typing. I'd put even odds that half the fans don't type the extra "s" and decide to just switch over to www.espn.com after getting the error message.

I have been carefully (exhaustively) tracking company naming changes over the past few years and can say with some finality that company naming is all about congruence, as is brand naming for that matter.

A tremendous amount of name changes occur in the US. In fact, every hour of every business day in the U.S., a company changes its name. Companies that present a single, congruent, easy to remember company or brand name are the ones who are doing it right; ESPN, Apple, Google.

Seems like the NFL got the message, too: Joel Price points out that the NFL.com logo has been sent to the showers on the new NFL website. Seems that he, like the rest of us, likes the "NFL shield without the .com hanging off the side." Joel also argued to drop the .com off the Chargers logo as well because it "didn't seem necessary."

CBS Sports is a legendary brand name, but in this case I think they've fumbled the ball.

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Posted by William Lozito at August 24, 2007 7:52 AM
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