The four American Marketing Association journals have experienced their most visible brand change since each of the journals launched. All of the brand elements associated with the journals have been redesigned, and visitors to the journal’s digital homes on ama.org have been able to view the new looks since late December of 2019. Print subscribers may have already received the January 2020 issues of Journal of Marketing and Journal of Public Policy & Marketing featuring bold new covers.
The goals of the redesign included creating a contemporary look that clearly fit within the AMA brand. An external creative team was asked to provide four unique subbrands that highlighted the independent nature of each journal. Most importantly, the AMA required flexible designs that could accommodate how journal content is consumed in an era when most articles are read online, rather than in print.
Historically, AMA journal brands had been based entirely around journal covers. Logos were crafted to use limited space (which needed to be saved for tables of contents). Color choices were based on 20th-century printing practices. When the most recent cover redesign of Journal of International Marketing occurred 15 years ago, there was only limited discussion of how the brand elements would translate to the web. Even with their incredible foresight, it’s exceptionally hard to imagine that when Robert Lavidge, Robert Ferber, and others launched Journal of Marketing Research, that there was any concern regarding a mostly white cover looking washed out on personal computer screens of the future.
Although covers are still valuable, the new visual brands were designed with digital consumption in mind. The newly introduced journal subbrands are each anchored by a bold color and unique graphic. The colors stand out in digital environments. Each graphic is versatile and can be easily repositioned to create more dynamism on websites, in emails, or via social posts. Unifying the four journals are AMA brand colors along with pinstripes and dotted lines in all four graphics.
The new brand designs feature insider nods to past covers. The Journal of Marketing has emphasized blue since its second volume and has been the AMA’s flagship publication since its founding, so the use of the AMA’s French navy blue was obvious. The choice of AMA’s red for the Journal of Marketing Research also seemed appropriate, considering that journal’s logo has been red since its launch in 1964. An amber hue with blue accent for Journal of Public Policy & Marketing was selected in recognition of the original publisher’s maize and blue branding. Finally, turquoise was selected for Journal of International Marketing, and the globe/map elements that have been associated with the journal since the mid-2000s were also retained.
The AMA as an organization was the result of two societies merging in large part to more efficiently publish and distribute the Journal of Marketing. The team at the AMA takes great pride in both protecting a heritage of and nurturing a future legacy devoted to high-quality journal research. In unveiling the new journal brands, we feel that we have accomplished both.