gsd&m rearranges deck chairs on the titanic

Times have been tough at GSD&M. One can well and truly say that their glory day are over as they have lost Wal*Mart, Chili’s and AT&T this year. Agency Spy has the autoposy.

I am mainly interested in their attempt to re-brand themselves, going from GSD&M to…GSD&M Idea City.



That move reminds me of the J. Walter Thompson rebrand to JWT. It saved a whole syllable! And that’s about all it did.

I just don’t understand what the point is. Roy Spence says that he wants the agency to stand alone from the founders, but the agency had become so iconic that the name already stood for more than partners’ initials (it had that brand equity thing going for it).

Plus, Idea City sounds so unserious. Like something my third grade teacher would have called the part of the classroom that we did creative writing in. Or where the munchkins go to think about how to off the wicked witch.

I’ve never been a fan of hokey ad agency names, like the (very successful) StrawberryFrog (though I actually like Goodness Manufacturing). And anyway, an agency is a brand, and GSD&M is walking away from its current equity for what? To make the current agency people feel better about the partners retiring? Because they always liked Idea City as a name, but thought of it after they put their initials on the door and have now found an excuse to make the change?

This is just silly, and whoever is running the rebrand might be better utilized working on new business. It smacks of a case of rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.

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