The NFL team formerly known as the Washington Redskins remains in search of a new nickname.
But in attempting to replace the old name that Native American advocates have called a racial slur, the team has rebranded itself temporarily as the “Washington Football Team” for the 2020 season.
Seriously. That’s it!
Executive vice president and chief marketing officer Terry Bateman, hired Monday to oversee the name change and rebranding process, called the temporary design “a nice link between the history and the future,” according to the Associated Press.
“This is an organic kind of move,” Bateman said in a phone interview Thursday. “We wanted to think it through and really try to figure out what is the best approach for us, for the community, for the fans, for everybody, and came to the conclusion that what we wanted to do was to go slow with the renaming process and really be very thoughtful, very inclusive, respectful and all those things.
“That’s going to require some time to do it right.”
The problem is that putting thought into the final name apparently means skipping on using any creative juices in the meantime.
Marketing experts hope Snyder, coach Ron Rivera and Washington’s creative department consult with the community before determining a new name. Bateman expects fans, sponsors and others to have input before a final decision is made.
“I think it’s critically important because you don’t want to do (a name change) again,” Carnegie Mellon associate professor of marketing and strategy Tim Derdenger said recently. “You don’t want to mess this up, so they really need to take it seriously.
The Associated Press contributed to this story.