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Rear admiral seeks new, broader Navy slogan

Sep. 2, 2012 - 10:04AM   |   Last Updated: Sep. 2, 2012 - 10:04AM  |  
A screen grab from a Navy video touting the slogan "America's Navy: A global force for good."
A screen grab from a Navy video touting the slogan "America's Navy: A global force for good." (Navy video)
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"America's Navy: A global force for good" has been rallying recruits for nearly three years.

But a rear admiral says it could be time for a change. In an Aug. 14 post on the http://blog.usni.org/">U.S. Naval Institute's blog, Rear Adm. James Foggo questions whether "Global force for good" may be too limiting when it comes to the Navy brand.

Foggo, a former submarine commander and the current assessment division director for the Office of Chief of Naval Operations, is also seeking feedback from the fleet.

The global force slogan rolled out in fall 2009 in print and online advertisements and was met with a fair share of criticism from the deck plates, where sailors said it was too wimpy and preachy.

The purpose of the campaign, which was chosen after focus groups with sailors, was to appeal to a higher sense of service that young people were seeking, beyond just a solid career, Navy officials said at the time.

"Human Resource specialists tell me that our current brand sells well with the Millennial Generation," Foggo wrote in his blog. "Those joining our ranks today … want to make a difference."

Potential recruits make up just one part of the Navy audience, Foggo reasons. Branding typically appeals to all consumers. For the Navy, that would include everyone from taxpayers to decision makers on Capitol Hill.

"The point is that the ‘brand' has to appeal to a broad audience, with different levels of experience and different perspectives," Foggo said. "The challenge is to reach and appeal to this wide audience with a clear and concise message of who we are."

After reading Foggo's blog, Cmdr. Alvin "Flex" Plexico, spokesman for Navy Recruiting Command, said keeping an "open dialogue" on branding is a positive. But he added that "Global force for good" is resonating.

"It champions our industrial base. … It epitomizes our ability to take the fight to the enemy far away from our shores. … It sends the message that when diplomacy or deterrence fails, standby! American resolve and wherewithal will be there," Foggo wrote. "Perhaps we should adopt a brand that does all that?"

Not only questioning the merits of the current slogan, Foggo asks whether the Navy should have multiple brand messages — or no brand at all. His hope is to feed the larger debate.

Nearly 50 comments had been posted under his blog post as of Aug. 23. Want to weigh in? Email us your thoughts at navylet@navytimes.com?subject=RE:%20Navy%20brand">navylet@navytimes.com.

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