Process of creating MLS Atlanta brand begins

Atlanta United? Real Atlanta Phoenix? Atlanta FC Black Harts?

The process of naming Atlanta’s MLS team began with the sending out of a survey to members of the franchise’s Founder’s Club earlier this week. United, Phoenix and Black Harts were among many possibilities as being associated with the team’s brand in the survey. When the team was introduced last April, owner Arthur Blank said that the team’s supporters would play an important part in deciding the name.

The survey consists of 21 elements. Some questions focused on the demographics (age, gender, income, location) of members and their history with and level of interest in soccer and other sports.

Toward the end of the survey, questions are asked about the team’s name, nickname and brand.

Examples in a weighted scale of disagreement to agreement include:

The (team’s) icons/symbols should feature elements of Atlanta history.

There should be a mascot (e.g., Freddie Falcon or Harry the Hawk).

The survey also asks preferences between a European-style name, similar to Toronto FC or FC Dallas, or an American-style name, similar to Seattle Sounders or Chicago Fire.

Finally, using a four-point scale for each possibility, the survey asks members what they think of the following 19 possibilities as part of the team’s identity. The survey stresses that these might not be part of the name, just associated with the team in some way: United, Premier, Phoenix, Centennial, Empire, Terminus, King, Legion, Resurgent, Black Hart, Olympic, Athletic Club, Football Club, ATL, Highlander, Rail, Firebird, Locomotive and Soccer Club.

Questions about the survey and the naming process have been sent to the team’s reps. More information will be posted in this story as those questions are answered.