Fallon tunes up logos for BBC radio stations

The BBC is set to relaunch all the identities for its national radio stations by the end of this month.

London-based advertising agency Fallon, which has an independent design division, was chosen to redesign the logos and brand toolkits for the broadcaster’s five analogue stations, as well as its digital-only networks. Fallon clinched the £120 000 contract in March following a four-way pitch.

The brief involved creating nine new identities for each of the broadcaster’s radio services, and ensuring they worked well together, as well as individually.

Gilda Witte, head of marketing for the BBC’s radio brands, says, ‘Fallon came up with the best solution – we asked them to pitch because we already have a relationship with them, and we knew that they would give us a different perspective on how the logos could work,’ she says.

Fallon partner Lawrence Green says the increasing visualisation of radio brands is fuelling the need for strong identities. ‘These brands were previously largely audio-based, so the visual identities were relatively unimportant,’

he says. ‘But we have seen radio brands become more visual as they are being viewed more through television and the Web.’

Jamie Craven, the designer behind the new logos at Fallon, says the designs work equally well when used on a small or large scale. ‘Although the identities are very simple, they still have personality and can work across different spaces more effectively than the previous logos,’ he says.

The project comes as Fallon – whose clients include Cadbury, Sony and Asda – expands its advertising remit to include branding and identity projects.

Green explains, ‘The best advertising agencies take responsibility for the whole brand rather than just its advertising. Partly, we are responding to the world changing, but we also feel creatively precocious.’

Witte adds that the boundaries between advertising and branding continue to blur.

‘We are getting all our agencies to operate beyond their remits. The best agencies can do that formally and informally,’ she says.

All the BBC’s radio websites will be updated with the new logos. Radio 5’s logo will appear on the website on 6 August, with the remainders rolled out by the end of August.

• The Radio 1 logo has been redesigned six times since 1988, the year the station finally gained its own stereo FM network
• Radio 2’s logo was last revamped in 2000, when it received its neon ‘2’
• Since its birth in 1990, Radio 5’s logo has undergone five incarnations.
• BBC7 is the broadcaster’s latest digital radio station, ‘reviving’ old dramas and comedy series. Its former logo featured two mirror-image ‘7’s forming the smiling mouth of a comedy mask

January – BBC radio identities design brief released to four groups
March – Advertising agency Fallon appointed to redesign all nine BBC radio station logos and brand toolkits, for which it received a fee of £120 000
June – Radios 3 and 4 launched logos for their podcast services
6 August – Radio 5 logo launched
12 August – Asian Network to launch new logo
End of August – All the remaining logos will be launched

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