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Navy dumps unpopular recruiting slogan during Army game

December 15, 2014 (Photo Credit: Navy)

Viewers who watched the Navy's latest recruiting ad during the nationally televised Army-Navy football game might have noticed something missing — any mention of the Navy's recruiting slogan, "A global force for good."

The 30-second spot, titled "The Shield," debuted to TV and Web audiences worldwide, including to CBS viewers of the 115th gridiron meeting between the service academies, and it was added to the "America's Navy" YouTube page shortly after the game ended.

The most striking image: an American family, surrounded by hundreds of sailors and Navy officers in an array of uniforms and gear, representing the many different career fields in the service. As the 30-second commercial concludes, the viewer hears only the deep and familiar voice of actor Keith David saying "To get to you, they'd have to get by us: America's Navy."

Gone is the "Global force for good," a 5-year old slogan that hasn't been popular with many sailors, admirals, or the public at large, officials say.

"We've been phasing out the global force for good tagline over the past year," said Cmdr. Chris Servello, spokesman for the chief of naval personnel. "It's not that we aren't a global force for good, but rather that the tagline alone doesn't capture all of who we really are, as a Navy, that led to the decision to phase it out over time."

It was fleet and veteran feedback, Servello said, that convinced Navy leadership it was time for the "Global force for good" tagline to go. The feeling among current and former sailors was that it just didn't capture just how diverse the Navy's communities and missions really are.

"If we're going to have a tagline, we want it to resonate with not only those who we are convincing to join the Navy, but also those who are serving as well as those who have served," Servello said Monday. "It was a successful campaign, but it was just it's time to go."

So for now, Navy leadership has decided to do away with any tagline, he said.

"Our brand is 'America's Navy,' " Servello said. "We may, or may not, move to a new tagline again in the future. I would say we're in the beginning of that process of deciding what, if anything, should be added as a tagline."

Navy Recruiting Command's advertising agency, Lowe Campbell Ewald, has been conducting focus groups to tease out themes and ideas that could resonate and result in a new slogan, he said, but no firm proposals have emerged.

But the option of simply using America's Navy, without any embellishment, remains on the table, Servello said. ​The next Navy ad, expected in early 2015, will highlight the service's ability to operate around the world — on, above and below the sea, according to a Navy news release.

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