OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network and a case of crayolas gone mad

Oprah Winfrey is a network television icon. For more than 25 years she has worked hard to create a name for herself and her popular tv show, providing inspiration to millions of Americans. Her charity record is outstanding; she is the richest African-American female in America and the world.

On January 1st, 2011 her own television channel will be launched: OWN – Oprah Winfrey Network – will premiere as an expanded series of shows that will explore the issues that matter to Oprah’s viewers, regarding health, home, family and relationships.

The colorful “OWN” logo attempts to be a bold and apparently multi-colored approach to the diversity of Oprah’s viewers. However, it seems that it’s the exact opposite of the Gap’s failed attempt to become minimalistic; the OWN logo is screaming with every color of the rainbow.

One would expect the boldness that’d emphasize the ratings of the Oprah show in network television, however the choice of such a cornucopia of colors was perceived by many as “arrogant”, “confusing” or flat out “failure”.

Creative branding can often fail at two levels; being unable to cross the recognition threshold or going way overboard with brand recognition. Either way, the branding suffers in terms of acceptance; after all, Gap knew better when it changed back to the old colors and lettering.


  1. it’s like a rainbow on acid.

  2. If she used Own.tv to promote the network, it will really help .tv with brand awareness. (The Oprah effect)

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