July 3, 2011

brand situation

Liberty Media to acquire IDT Entertainment; Starz’ top premium television service to join with IDT’s animation and live action production and home entertainment distribution business. Combined company will product content for all distribution platforms.” – May 16, 2006

When this big announcement was made in the spring of 2006 it signaled the possibility of an integrated production-to-distribution business strategy that would enable the Starz brand to aggressively compete with rival HBO and Showtime in the development and distribution of original content. With the announcement came the challenge of evolving the Starz brand beyond its then-current position as a premium blockbuster movie channel on cable and satellite to one that more fully captured its capability and consumer value.

Darwin was hired to develop an updated brand positioning platform and architecture to enable a clear, consistent and compelling articulation of the new brand story to employees, industry partners and consumers.

brand evolution & expression

Working in close collaboration with Starz’ senior leadership Darwin recommended elevating from a movie-focused position for the Starz brand to one which captured the broader offering. Starz = movies evolved to Starz = evocative entertainment.

To reflect the inviting and evocative aspects of the brand’s refreshed persona, Darwin recommended updating the primary mark, and using it as inspiration for creating the print and on-air visual treatment. Darwin hired Denver-based D&I to design the logo, which utilizes spacing between the letters to create a star-like opening into the word of excitement and entertainment. Hollywood-based design firm Troika then took the new mark and captured the brand’s full expression through development of the on-air visual design.

brand extension

More than six years later the Starz brand remains a strong symbol of entertainment. The underlying positioning continues to drive the brand’s expression, demonstrating the strength of the brand’s identity and essence.