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Nexstar refreshes logo, brand identity for CW Network

The new logo of the CW Network.
The refreshed logo of the CW Network. (Graphic by The Desk)

Nexstar Media Group has refreshed the brand identity and logo of its CW Network, dropping the word “the” from its logo and incorporating a new color palette.

The logo was first unveiled two months ago in creatives at the end of certain CW Network shows, with a bolder, fatter “CW” using a bright orange color scheme. By contrast, the former CW Network brand identity used bold and cold pastels, and included the word “the” as part of the logo.

“The CW is in the middle of a brand transformation, and a new network deserves a new look and feel,” Chris Spadaccini, the Chief Marketing Officer at the CW Network, told the website Variety this week. “When I got here, not only did I arrive to find a logo that was slightly dated, there was really zero consistency in terms of how we presented our brand. Everything just looked very different.”

Spadaccini said his team “came to the conclusion that the logo needed a makeover, and the ‘The’ [was] not readable.”

“Where it’s placed currently in the logo does not reduce down well to digital formats — t’s not readable in streaming, it’s not readable in social media, it’s not readable on anything on a mobile screen, which is where we’re largely engaging with our customers. So that creates problems.”

Spadaccini said the word “the” will not be used with certain franchises, such as CW Sports and CW Originals, but the network will still refer to itself as “The CW,” because most people do so already.

For the color palette, Spadaccini said the CW Network is going with a vivid orange that he’s calling “hot sauce” — the orange resembles a color used by rival Fox for some of its international channels, which makes sense given that Nexstar’s founder and CEO has compared the new incarnation of the CW Network to Fox — as well as a pink “icing” color and a green Spadaccini calls “mint.”

“We think it’s cool because it’s warm, it’s energetic, it’s accessible, it stands out,” Spadaccini said of the orange color.

Another element Spadaccini will franchise from other networks: Sonic branding. Most are familiar with NBC’s three-note chimes, and rivals ABC and CBS have their own versions as well. When it comes to the CW, the network will lean on a more-unique type of audio: The sound of a match being struck.

“That kind of plays off the hot sauce a little bit,” Spadaccini said.

British-based marketing agency Dixon Baxi was brought on board to help with the brand refresh at the CW Network, which will be prominent in the network’s promotions from this weekend forward.

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About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is a nationally-recognized, award-winning journalist who has covered the business of media, technology, radio and television for more than 11 years. He is the publisher of The Desk and contributes to Know Techie, Digital Content Next and StreamTV Insider. He previously worked for Thomson Reuters, the Walt Disney Company, McNaughton Newspapers and Tribune Broadcasting.
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