Unified Branding is Tougher Than You Think

Marianne Aiello, for HealthLeaders Media , March 27, 2013

This unification is a rather belated change—Novant Health was created when Presbyterian Healthcare merged with Carolina Medicorp in 1997. Since then, it has grown into a $3.4 billion system, but facilities across four states retained their own identities, save for a common green arch on each sign.

"It took us a while to evolve as a system. There was a lot of independence," CEO Carl Armato told a local paper. "The next step for us is to unite as a family under one brand."


The other half of Novant's strategic branding plan is the creation of a new logo: a purple N and a rather abstract negative-space H set on a grey background. The colors were chosen to convey warmth, in line with the new focus on patient experience that Armato believes goes hand-in-hand with the improved brand.

While this updated naming convention is about 15 years too late, it will ultimately create a clearer vision of the health system's brand in the eyes of the community. People will no longer have to guess if Presbyterian or Rowan falls under the Novant umbrella—it will be immediately clear to them from the logo.

I chalk up the logo to rebranding fever, however. While the use of negative space is clever, it reads more like "N:" than "NH." Hopefully this is something patients will get used to in time.

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1 comments on "Unified Branding is Tougher Than You Think"

Anthony (4/3/2013 at 4:51 PM)
Living in this market I can tell you the local press skewered both campaigns. The sad fact is if you have to clarify and explain what these logos and symbols mean, you have missed the mark. Period. One only wonders how much $ they spent on the rebranding.




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