60 thoughts on “A New AVMA Logo? Here’s Why

  1. What do you think of the member input on this topic? Do you feel like we need to invest more money into additional studies of this topic?

  2. I’m all for the AVMA doing everything it can to be progressive, relevant, and adaptable to today’s society. A new logo is not going to achieve this. Like others have said, a simple graphic says less about the association than its actions. Why not invest the money in other more worthy endeavors identified by the 20/20 Vision Commission and leave the logo alone?

  3. We have a new logo right now: the 150 year logo. How much difference has that made? Along with this logo, we are promoting the Year of the Veterinairan. This is a nice campaign, getting state legislators to make the proclaimation. I would like to see an estimation of how much the 150 year logo and rollout program are expected to return on the investiment. By-the-way, how much did it coust to have a professional develop the 150 year logo? Don’t get me wrong, it is a great idea and a very good campaign. My point is, we have a reason for this logo. Pfizer did the same thing when it turned 150. after that year, they went back to the tried and true logo.

    I have worked enough with marketing to understand branding and the consequences of messing with an established brand. Companies may mess with a slogan or a mascot. “The other white meat” was retired a couple years ago. NBC tried to get rid of the peacock – that didn’t work. They do not typically mess with their logo. Being from Northfield, MN – home of Malt-O-Meal, I should repot that they are changing their logo to M.O.M. Brands. Seems Malt-o-meal is seen as a cheap not as good as ceral. Marketing research compared their brand to other brands in the same catagory. Let’s see who would our logo compare to? AVMA versus: AMA, other medical specalities – none of whose logos I can think of.

    Wait – Stop – do not move forward! Show me/us how the 150 logo ahs brought great returns on that investment before you roll out a new logo. Since the Year of the Veterinarian will have been done, do we roll out the new logo with the decade of the veterinarian????? I just do not see how a logo can generate more visits to a veterinary clinic or more requests for consultation to a farm.

  4. I agree that 100% that we do not need a new logo! I would wager a considerable amount that if if was Dr. DeHaven’s own money funding the new logo that the old logo would look perfectly fine to him. I would like to recommend that the time and effort that is going to be spent on this logo project be redirected to finding a health insurance provider for our profession.
    Dale Kosted, D.V.M.

  5. i see absolutely nothing wrong with the current logo. ever since mr. obama’s pepsi logo, everyone seems to be trying to make cool logos now. i, for one, in absolutely no way, want to become a more ‘progressive’ organization. veterinary medicine has always progressed with technology, we do not need to become a ‘politically/one world’ progressive organization. i realize i may be a dinosaur in today’s vet world, and of the wrong sex as well. with losing my insurance, and this progressive and one world trend, i see little reason to remain a member of an organization that seems to be losing touch with its paying members.

  6. Please don’t spend our hard earned money on a new logo. It is not the logo that counts, it what you do to represent your members. Can you tell me what the American Cancer society’s logo looks like or the American Diabetes Association or how about the Humane Society of the United States, I can’t and I give money to them every year because they do a great job fulfilling their missions. Put that money towards free marketing materials for your members.

  7. It seems to me that more and more logos appear meaningless. We learn to recognize those that represent some enormous part of the economy, or ones that we see very often because they are local.

    In numbers, we veterinarians are never going to be a really large profession which the general public will recognize by a logo that doesn’t spell out clearly that it represents “veterinarians”, Most members of the public usually have a positive reaction when they see a form of that word.

    I hope that we will continue to use the current logo, or at least make who we are a prominent part of it.

  8. What problems do we have with the current logo? It is accurate and precise. I do not see a need to change.

  9. I have a beautitul belt buckle, one of a few with the veterinary logo. Everyone admires it. Why would I want a new redesigned modern job? A member since 1955..RLB.

  10. Unnecessary. A waste of money. A resounding “no” from this member, although I understand our input as to the need for this expenditure is unwanted.

  11. What a huge waste of money. I resent the fact that dues are increasing while money is being spent in this manner. It sure sounds like the members are totally against this idea and yet the AVMA is proceeding with the design of the new logo. What ever happened to “member input”?

  12. This is not the time to be spending money on rebranding. The AVMA needs to work to gain respect and recognition based on ACTIONS not by changing a perfectly serviceable logo. Spending lots of money does not guarantee an excellent logo. An excellent logo represents the organization. From the current thread, our new logo needs to have dollar signs going in the shredder on one side and disgruntled veterinarians on the other.

    Add me to the list that hopes Shane is not designing any new logo. His behavior is indeed unprofessional.

  13. What a waste of money. The dues keep going up, we keep getting saddled with more regulations and they want to spend $80,000 to make a new logo???? When did the survey go out to see if we wanted a new logo? How much money will be spent redesigning stationary, signs, paraphenalia, etc. to accomodate this new logo.

    I came very close to leaving the AVMA at the end of 2012. This does not help my decision to stay.
    I vote a resounding “NO”.

  14. I have to say “no” to the new logo idea. This horse had better not have left the barn. The way I understand the article, they are not asking if we need a new logo. They are saying, we decided to commission and new logo and it will cost 80K plus 98K. Of course it will be worth it because it will create 200K. First I want to see the research that says we need a new logo. For a while this communication chain became a rant against Shane. Granted he is out of his league and should just keep quiet.

    Back to the conversation between veterinarians. As a food animal veterinarian, the current logo works for me. I am afraid a new logo will try to add some sort of “animal” representation. You will never satisfy anyone doing that. I only see downside with this project. Please, someone, put up a good defense in support of changing the logo. I want to believe. Signed Pollyanna

  15. Dear AVMA,
    It has been 17 days since the story was posted. You have received 100% negative responses from veterinarians here, on Facebook, and on VIN. You have also received numerous requests to explain the budget of $80,000 for gathering member input, when it could be easily accomplished for free.

    No response at all? Doesn’t say much for your goal of improved communications with members.

  16. Add my name to the “no” votes.
    If you want to be seen as more progressive and proactive, then DO SOMETHING to earn that reputation. We are not idiots. You will be judged by your actions, not your window dressing.

  17. I’ve been an AVMA member for 29 years. Wow, 29 years. I agree with Dr. Sernik that I will be looking for alternatives to the PLIT insurance and will be exiting the organization. This wasteful expenditure of our money is really the last straw. My income (and that of many of my colleagues) has shrunk to the point that the annual AVMA dues is a real hardship. Wasn’t there a recent increase? And this is how it is being spent? I bet those in charge of this “re-branding” (and Mr. Shane Wilson) have not felt the financial pinch as much as those of us who make up the general membership of this organization.

    $80,000…. Really?

  18. Dear AVMA decision makers,

    I was under the impression that the AVMA @Work blog was a two way communication tool; something to get dialogue going between those of us who pay our dues and those of us who spend them. If I am mistaken, please make a note so that I will not waste my time further on this site.

    In re-reading the entire post from Dr. DeHaven, I must apologize. It seems that I may have misunderstood where the AVMA is coming from on this. When I read “ Regarding the cost, $ 80,000-if it is all spent, is designed for the specific purpose of gaining member input”, I think I incorrectly assumed that the AVMA was asking for our input on whether we , the dues paying members, actually desire for our money to be spent logo shopping. Based on the responses, I think the answer is pretty apparent.

    When I read “the AVMA has begun the process of developing a new logo”, “The executive board decided to pursue a logo change for two reasons”, “as we continue the development process……”, I realized that in your eyes, this is a done deal. The initial 80,000 is not to find out if we WANT a logo; that doesn’t matter because you want a logo. The money is for us to get to choose a logo from several test logos.

    Am I reading this right? Please let me know. If I am correct, I don’t see how these actions follow “our relevance to our members, and thus the long term viability of the AVMA, is contingent on continuous change to meet member expectations”.

    My expectations have not changed. I desire to be part of an organization that promotes veterinary medicine and supports its dues paying members. An organization that exists for its members and not the other way around.

  19. Keep the current logo. It is tasteful and timeless. Don’t waste my dues on a new one.

  20. The simple truth is that no matter how much money is spent on finding implementing a “better” AVMA logo the end result is going to be the same. No one cares.

    No DVM is going to become a member because the AVMA has a better logo.

    No pet owner is going to take their pet to a veterinarian for care because of a better AVMA logo.

    No non-pet owner is going to decide to get a pet and take it to a veterinarian because of a netter AVMA logo.

    Bottom line is where is the meat?

  21. Way to go AVMA! The profession is going to heck and your solution is an $80000 logo change. Great idea! That’ll fix EVERYTHING!!! All those student debts will just go poof.

  22. Oh yeah, besides the obscene waste of money involved in the proposed logo change, the new logo itself stinks. It doesn’t have the word “veterinary” anywhere on it, and the Esculapian symbol is too tiny to see. I much prefer the old one; it was simple and to the point.

  23. Wow! What a colossal waste of money. Just when I think that I couldn’t hate or resent the AVMA any more. What are you guys smoking? Seriously. I recently moved to a new area and I cannot find work. New grads are pouring out faster and faster thanks to the complete incompetence of the AVMA in accrediting foreign vet schools, and chicken-littling about the non-existing “shortage” of vets, which encouraged the opening of new vet schools and the increase in class size at existing schools. The previous posters are exactly right. It’s as though the AVMA is working to destroy the profession from the inside. Please, stop “helping” us before you wipe us out as a profession completely. I need to find other liability and disability insurance so that I can drop my membership. I am certainly not a member because I support anything that the AVMA is doing or because I feel that it in any way represents my best interests. Give me the $80K and a member list, and I will do your survey for you.

  24. Listen, while I completely understand why people are freaking out about spending 80k on a logo because the artistic part of the process can be accomplished for much less. It’s important to remember that you get what you pay for. Small organizations who can’t afford to test and retest to make sure that all aspects and market segments are accounted for settle for less and live with the results. 99designs and other contest based systems CAN work great but it’s very much a gamble and is only as good as the team running the contest. That being said it often is the blind leading the blind. Unlike lower end solutions to a logo design a professional group will take the guess work out of the process and save you tons of money in the long run.

    • @Shane. Even if $80K is a reasonable amount to spend on a new logo to do it right, where is the data that the members feel the logo is “traditional” or “old fashioned”? Did anyone in this thread get ASKED? Did they put it out on social media as a question? How many people were, polled, how many responded, and how strongly did they feel this is a priority.

      And, NOT spending $80K to revamp a perfectly good logo while our profession is in crisis ALSO saves money in the long run. About $200K.

    • I can think of $80,000 dollars worth of dogs and cats that need to be spayed or castrated or helped with their health problems because their owners can’t afford it or vets who need help after 6 years of recession to upgrade their facilities or just pay their staff!



      • If it’s done right it will raise awareness and bring in ten times what it cost.

        • Prove it. Show me the money. Show me the data and show me where the AVMA is actually helping out new grads who got into this profession on the promise that there was a shortage of veterinarians. Where is the proof that if we spend this money it will bring in $2M (which is what the whole revamp will cost). If you are so sure Shane, PROVE IT. This isn’t YOUR profession going down the tubes, it’s OURS.

          • All I can say is you can be mad, fine! Because they want to spend a ungodly amount of money to make sure that the re-branding is done right. Their jobs and their livelihoods depend on this being a success too! And perhaps your right, they could look around and find a better deal. But what would make me mad if I was you would be if they came out and said they were going to hold a contest for $300 on 99designs and not give your future the real attention it needs.

        • Wow. You sound very confident without offering any information to back up your claim. How about you go ahead and front all of the money for this time waster and get back to us when it brings in ten times the cost in revenue.

          I would ask in the future that you “disclose” what industry you are representing before trying to blow smoke.

        • Shane,

          Your company’s website is attractive, and you’ve put together some very nice designs. Having said that, your credibility is shot, and based on your series of posts, there’s nothing you can do to regain it among this audience.

          You claim to be a “Branding Specialist and Marketing Consultant,” yet you entered this forum and displayed:
          (a) defensiveness
          (b) a lack of ability to present evidence for any of your claims
          (c) poor spelling
          (d) poor grammar

          Let me be clear. I am not making any sort of personal attack. I am simply making observations given the evidence you’ve presented.

          Dr. DeHaven and the rest of the AVMA, is this the type of branding specialist and marketing consultant you want speaking for you?

        • Bring in money from whom and for whom? Doesn’t the AVMA get it’s money from dues from veterinarians? If you shell out $80,000 for a new logo, from whom, exactly, will the $800,000 go.

    • Shane,

      I hope that your firm is not the one that the AVMA has hired. Your lack of professionalism in this forum is unbelievable.

  25. A perfect example of how the AVMA is completely out of touch with its members.

    I, too, vote “NO” on the new logo. There – research is done. Don’t waste my membership fees on something so frivolous.

  26. I would love to drop my membership (and would in a heartbeat if it weren’t for PLIT) for reasons such as this. This organization is so disconnected with it’s members and the profession that ANYONE thinking that spending $80,000 on a new logo is a good idea is really really out in left field. This profession is in crisis and the AVMA thinks spending the equivalent of a veterinarian’s salary (actually right now the equivalent of about TWO veterinary salaries) is a good idea. I’m ashamed that this previously esteemed organization would be so totally clueless as to the state of the profession out here in the trenches. You really should be ashamed of yourselves. The AVMA should be spending OUR monies instead on addressing the educational crisis, addressing ways to help the number of veterinary students that won’t possibly find a job in this devastating economy despite graduating with mountains of debt, educating pet owners on the need to come to the veterinarian and addressing the high costs and constant threats to the viability of the thousands of small veterinarian businesses that in constant threat of bankrupcy and ruin. Oh and just so you know, Facebook is free. I can offer my opinion for free on everything from the US president to what type of chocolate is best. I can even draw you a logo for free too!

  27. Like I said on your Facebook page – this doesn’t make sense to me. You’ve just acknowledged that the profession is in crisis. When there is a crisis, all available resources should be committed to handling the crisis. Non-urgent matters should wait until the crisis is over. I think “deciding on whether we need a new logo” is a non-urgent matter and I also think that the general membership is in agreement with me. I do not understand why you would betray your membership in this way. You do have an obligation to act in the interest of your dues-paying members. I fail to see how “new logo” is in anyone’s best interest, except perhaps for the people you are paying that $80-180K to.

  28. I cannot believe you are spending this much money out of our dues at this tough time on logo nonsense. The AVMA is as out of touch as the White House when it comes to the real world. You can spin it in the above memo any way you want to, Dr., D, but it comes out the same. WASTE OF FUNDS. If, as you say, you want to be more progressive and proactive, why don’t you do something about the sorry state of the profession, declining incomes, and increasing numbers of graduates as well as the debt load. The numbers of accredited schools and graduating seniors should be going down, not up. Just keep spending money on surveys and logos and YOU will see a sharp decline in membership. Including mine.

  29. If the AVMA feels the need to choose a new logo, it should do so as inexpensively as possible. The article also stated that it is going to cost another $ 98,000 to implement the new logo. That is a total of $ 178,000 on this. I would like to see a budget for this endeavor.

  30. I had to double check the date, just to make sure this is not an April Fool’s joke.

    80 grand just to decide if the organization needs a new logo? We are not even talking about what the logo itself would cost, nor the implementation.

    This is the same thinking that has brought us your new staff position to deal with our two major problems, diversity and international relations. (By the way, since you are stupid enough to think it costs 80K to survey your members, I should explain, in small words, that the proceeding line is sarcasm.) A position who’s cost Dr. DeHaven will not reveal to the members.

    Income for front line vets is down, helped by your “need more vets” push. That same push will trap our next generation into a lifetime of debt.

    I used to think that AVMA was merely stupid or corrupt. Now I have a new thought. If someone wished to actively destroy the veterinary profession, can you think of anything they would do differently than AVMA has already done?

    Out of my love for my profession, I will offer you this, and I will only charge you $5,000. If you want to survey your members, all you have to do is to send out an email. (free) That email should include a link to an atwork post. In the post, you put a survey widget (free). The widget automatically tabulates the results. Read the results in 30 days. All this will cost is less than 1 hour of your webmaster’s time.

    I also recommend a similar survey asking if veterinarians are actively encouraging or discouraging young people from entering our profession.

    I want to ask one parting question. The question does not require a lengthy explanation to cover oneself, merely a one word answer. To whom does this money you are proposing to spend belong? AVMA? Or the members?

  31. I’m still waiting for the accounting of the $80,000.

    Why not just switch? It’s not a big deal. Use http://99designs.com/ and you can have a beautiful and functional logo, stationary, web site, etc whatever you want or don’t for next to nothing.

    Please send the balance to me. I just saved you about $79, 500. I will use it for some local veterinary care marketing.

    Perhaps too many of you are too out of touch with what we working our asses off to spend $80,000 to decide if you want to change the logo? I changed mine a couple years ago.

    I’d be willing to bet any number of us could come in and easily find where you are wasting other $$$ of our money.

  32. Put me down as another resounding “No” on the new logo. Some of my colleagues could use that $80K to pay bills.

  33. Just one more reason I am so glad to have terminated my “relationship” with this frivolous and wasteful organization. Just as with labor unions, the AVMA may have been started with noble aspirations. Sadly, both are now bloated and self-serving, bleeding their members to pay for their foolish wants and egos. May you soon go the way of the dinosaurs.

  34. Wow. Just wow.

    I’ve been a dues-paying member since 1985. I thought the AVMA gave me pretty good insurance, but now that’s going down the tubes, the future of the profession is in jeopardy because of too many new grads, and now you want to spend $80k to discern whether or not we need a new logo? I guess all I have to show for my membership is the darn journal that isn’t pertinent to clinical practice.

    Small wonder our profession is in such a mess.

    FWIW, I bought my logo for $99, or you can design your own with a $4.99 iPad app.

  35. One more comment from a non-member who is fed up with the alleged professional representation we get from this association. I’ll echo Lisa’s call for a detail of the $80,000 expenditure. I have a hard time believing that determining member support costs $80,000.

    Our profession is in a tailspin, it’s taking the New York Times to point out what our professional organizations ought to be determining (despite attempts at a defense of the current climate from the AVMA and AAVMC), and the AVMA is concerned with how their logo appears on certain forms of media.

    Further, I’d like for someone at the AVMA to clearly define, without lofty spin, what is meant by attempting to become a “more progressive, proactive organization.” If that means what I think it means, rest assured that I’m more comfortable with my decision to cancel membership now than ever.

  36. I let my long time AVMA membership lapse for a couple of years, and just rejoined this year, only to find this announcement of $80,000 being spent for a new logo. Given all the challenges facing the profession and the overall US economy, redesigning the logo at the great expense is the epitome of frivolity. It’s just window dressing.

    AVMA, if you want me to renew again, you’re going to have to show that the organization provides a meaningful benefit to the veterinary profession.

  37. I am glad that the executive board thinks this is a good idea. How about asking us dues paying members? Last I checked, emails were pretty close to free and i am pretty sure you have all of ours. You can put me down as a NO for now, at least until I know our profession will survive the mess that it is in.


  38. $80K for “member input”? What’s the budget for the actual logo design.

    Priorities, AVMA. Rome is burning and you’re discussing new curtains.

  39. Can you please post a detailed expense report on how the $80,000 will be or has been spent?
    Emails are free, right? Well, maybe pay someone for 10 minutes to write it.

    Please stop wasting our money. If you spend money frivolously it doesn’t matter how pretty a new logo is if the association isn’t worth what I flush down the toilet.

  40. Well, you aren’t doing it with my money.

    I have a brand new business and it doesn’t have a logo. Why? Because I am spending my hard earned money on training to bring better services to customers and to bring customers in the door. I am spending it on paying back my loan. And hey my kids need to eat.

    I am a 2006 grad, and I am DONE sending my money to this worthless organization. $80k is more than I have made in the past 4 years combined. You ought to be ashamed of yourselves.