It was a year of change for Beloit. Not only did the team get a new ownership group and a new ballpark, they also rolled out a new logo and new branding. Their new identity as the Beloit Sky Carp (High-A; Midwest League) is our choice for the 2022 Logo/Branding of the Year.
If you missed it, a Sky Carp is a goose that stays put year-round and doesn’t fly south for the winter. The rollout met with some resistance at first from fans.
“It would disingenuous to say it was a big hit right away and that people loved it right out of the gate,” said Josh Flickinger, Media & Public Relations Manager for Beloit. “Whenever you have change, there’s going to be a certain amount of pushback especially from fans that were in love with the Snappers. It had been the team logo since 1995 and people were used to that.”
Developed with branding agency Brandiose, picking a name that’s out of the ordinary definitely got fans’ attention in a positive way.
And moving into ABC Supply Stadium also made the process a lot smoother in terms of integrating the new team identity.
“We opened the stadium and only played 24 games there last year,” Flickinger said. “Because of that, the Snappers logo and branding wasn’t really incorporated into the stadium at all. There wasn’t a ton we needed to change and we are really fortunate in that regard.”
This past year, Beloit set a new attendance and merchandise record. When it comes to the new logo, Flickinger says the pandemic is playing a surprisingly positive role.
“Obviously, this is still in the heart of the pandemic, which is causing global shipping delays. That kind of allowed us to do a slow rollout of our merchandise. We kept getting new stuff. Some things we ordered a year ago are just now coming in,” Flicking said. “So every time fans come to our team store, people are getting more excited about it. They come into the store and say there’s always something new.”
And having unique branding is allowing the team to be creative and come up with new merchandise or ideas they weren’t able to with the old logo and branding. So what’s next for Beloit?
“November 15th is the one-year anniversary of our new branding. We’re excited to keep developing new merchandise. We’re still in the very baby years of this brand and we want to keep exploring different ways of being creative with it. We think we can set another merchandise and attendance record next year. We think it’s realistic because the community is excited about the Sky Carp.”
Past Ballpark Digest Logo/Branding of the Year Winners
2021 Logo/Branding of the Year: Burlington Sock Puppets
2020: No award
2019: Fayetteville Woodpeckers
2018: Copa de La Diversión
2017: Down East Wood Ducks
2016: Columbia Fireflies
2015: Daytona Tortugas
2014: Akron RubberDucks
2013: Hillsboro Hops
2011: Joliet Slammers
2010: Richmond Flying Squirrels