Cover Story: All for One
It's also developing a new logo. While it's not requiring the federations to change their logos, Smolyar says a lot of federations are interested in adopting it.
In fact, 10 federations are now part of a pilot group to help the organization develop its logo, with plans to implement the newly designed logo within their local federations. Smolyar is hoping the branding initiative prompts the other 10 percent of federations to adopt the "Jewish Federation of" naming structure, and all federations to adopt the logo. For federations that want to keep visual identities they've developed for their local brands, the organization is encouraging them to at least add "Endorsed by Jewish Federation of North America" to their taglines.
The organization plans to unveil the third prong of the rebranding effort — an online awareness campaign using banner ads — at its general assembly meeting in November in Washington, D.C. The core purpose of the campaign is to raise awareness of what Jewish federations do and invite people to connect. Smolyar says that between those three elements — aligning its name, getting key federations from across the system to adopt the name and logo locally, and having an awareness campaign — he thinks there will be enough incentives for local initiatives to join the rebranding movement.
Though they're operating as separate initiatives, Smolyar sees the rebranding and sharing of information as intimately related.
"It's about leveraging the power of the collective here, whether through sharing of information and coordinated direct marketing or through representation of our mission and values on the branding side," he says. "To really leverage the scale that we obviously have from being one of the largest charities in the world."
Smolyar says that while coordinating New Move and getting federations all on the same page has been challenging, the job of an umbrella organization is to be laser-focused on doing everything it can to help local federations meet their needs, especially in this economy, where many are facing limited resources and increased demands from the community.