From the archive, originally posted by: [ spectre ]

Can You Write a Better Slogan for NASA?

By Loretta Hidalgo Whitesides  /  September 06, 2007

In early August, NASA internally released its latest marketing
campaign, designed to show its relevance and value to the American
people. Its new slogan? “NASA explores for answers that power our
future.” The campaign now seems to be aborted, but it did get me
thinking, could we do any better?

I am no marketing genius, but I think that we could. I mean North
Face’s has much more zing, “Never Stop Exploring.” Even Dow Chemicals
did better, “The Human Element.”

Now, I know that NASA does not have the massive budget that these
companies do to hire super star advertising execs. I also know that a
lot of people at NASA put a lot of time and thought into this new
campaign and so I don’t want to criticize it without offering up some
constructive alternatives. Therefore, I am turning to cyberspace and
the power of crowdsourcing to come up with some alternatives to offer
them. One of the issues they cite in their market research is a
challenge being relevant to people 18-24.  Maybe we could help.  I
will even throw in prizes.

The writer of the best slogan will get a DVD of the space movie of
their choice, From the Earth to the Moon, Star Wars, Battlestar
Galactica, etc. and will be interviewed for a follow up posting on
what it takes to engage the public with space. Other noteworthy
submissions will get other small space swag.

For reference, the previous NASA slogan, under the previous
Administrator (new Administrator, new slogan) was “Explore, Discover,
Understand.” Although it seemed a little dry at the time, it now seems
light years ahead. It at least it honored the ‘under four words’ rule
(ok there is not really an under four words rule).

The NASA plan is more then just a slogan however, it also includes a
blue triangle and the equation “Innovation + Inspiration + Discovery =
Future.”  I am not interested in mocking what was done, I am actually
interested to see if in three weeks time, the collective power of the
Wired set can create something that actually moves, touches and
inspires people. To see if we can craft something that appeals to the
public, that speaks to them and has them want to make sure that we
Never Stop Exploring.

Submissions should be posted as comments here in the NASA Slogan
Reddit tool (link fixed!)
by Sept 28th. Please do not comment on each others submissions until
after the winner is announced on October 1st. If you don’t like
someone’s suggestion make your own! It is easier to destroy than to
create. Spread the word, I am throwing down the gauntlet to the whole
community — we will need artists, PR experts, poets, marketing
professionals and visionaries to capture the spirit of it.  Let’s show
them what we can do!

Internal NASA Memo from Robert Hopkins, Chief,
Office of Strategic Communications: NASA Messages
Date Released: Tuesday, August 7, 2007
Source: NASA HQ

National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Washington, DC 20546-0001
August 1,2007

Reply to the attention of: Office of Strategic Communications

TO: Officials-in-Charge of Headquarters Offices

FROM: Chief, Office of Strategic Communications


I am pleased to provide you with the final NASA Message Construct.
These messages have been market tested and have proven to resonate
best with the general public.

The Message Construct serves to guide your communication efforts with
the general public. We are asking that you use the Core Message: “NASA
explores for answers that power our future,” in the text of your
communications material and that it be used verbatim. We also have
developed a graphic element to illustrate and enhance the Core
Message. The graphic element is: Inspiration + Innovation + Discovery
= Future. The graphic element is to be used on all Agency
communications materials. The other messages in the Message Construct
are also market-tested and should be used where best applicable.

The new Message Construct can be found at
addition, the Strategic Communications Framework Implementation Plan,
NASA Style Guide, and the Strategic Communications Implementation
Handbook are also available at this site to help with your planning,
implementation and usage.

I am available to brief you and/or your organizations on the new
messaging and the Strategic Communications Framework Implementation

Robert Hopkins



CORE MESSAGE: NASA explores for answers that power our future.

Inspiration – NASA powers inspiration that encourages future
generations to explore, learn, and build a better future.

* Space exploration engages and inspires the public and encourages
students to pursue studies in challenging, high-tech fields.

* Space exploration contributes to our Nation’s economic
competitiveness by helping to build and maintain a skilled, high-tech

* Going to the Moon and Mars will be a stunning achievement and
enduring legacy to future generations of our desire to explore, learn,
and progress.

Innovation – NASA powers innovation that creates new jobs, new
markets, and new technologies.

* Space exploration has contributed to over a thousand new
technologies that improve and save lives every day–advanced breast
cancer imaging systems, heart pumps, biohazard detectors, LASIK eye
surgery, and water filtration systems are just a few innovations that
have benefited from NASA’s work.

* Space exploration will enable us to develop new technologies,
such as hydrogen fuel cells, that may help meet our energy needs on

* NASA research enables safer, more environmentally friendly, and
more efficient air travel. For example, NASA’s research in lightweight
composite materials, quieter and cleaner aircraft engine technologies,
and advanced air traffic management tools have all contributed to
improving the Nation’s air transportation system.

Discovery – NASA powers discovery that enables us to learn more about
ourselves, our world, and how to manage and protect it.

* Space exploration will enable us to better understand and
protect Earth through the study of weather and climate change, to
monitor the effects of the Sun, and to detect objects that could
collide with Earth.

* Space exploration satisfies our curiosity, advances our
knowledge, and answers fundamental questions about the history of
Earth, the solar system, and the universe.

* Going to the Moon provides an opportunity to test new
technologies and techniques and to develop resources for future
missions to Mars and beyond.

Inspiration + Innovation + Discovery = Future


NASA explores for answers that power our future.

* NASA exploration powers inspiration that engages the public and
encourages students to pursue studies in challenging high-tech fields.

* NASA exploration powers innovation that creates new jobs, new
markets, and new technologies that improve and save lives every day in
every community. Quieter and cleaner aircraft, advanced breast cancer
screening, heart pumps, biohazard detectors, and LASIK eye surgery
have all benefited from NASA’s work.

* NASA exploration powers discovery that enables us to better
understand our solar system and protect Earth through the study of
weather and climate change, to monitor the effects of the Sun, and to
detect objects that could collide with Earth.

Why explore? Because exploration powers the future through
inspiration, innovation, and discovery.


Deputy Administrator/Ms. Dale
Associate Administrator/Mr. Scolese
Chief of Staff/Mr. Morrell
Associate Deputy Administrator/W. Scales
Assistant Associate Administrator/Ms. Johnson
White House Liaison/Ms. Cherry
Assistant Administrator External Relations/W. O?Brien
Associate Administrator for Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate/
Dr. Porter
Associate Administrator for Exploration Systems Mission Directorate/
Dr. Horowitz
Associate Administrator for Institutions and Management/Mr. Luedtke

* Assistant Administrator for Diversity and Equal Opportunity/Ms.
* Assistant Administrator for Human Capital Management/Ms. Dawsey
* Assistant Administrator for infrastructure and Administration/
Ms. Dominguez
* Assistant Administrator for Internal Controls and Management
Systems/Mr. Henn
* (Acting)
* Assistant Administrator for Procurement/Ms. Goddard (Acting)
* Assistant Administrator for Security and Program Protection/Mr.
* Assistant Administrator for Small Business Programs/Mr. Delgado
* Executive Director, NSSC/Mr. Arbuthnot

Associate Administrator for Program Analysis and Evaluation/Dr. Pace
Associate Administrator for Science Mission Directorate/Dr. Stern
Associate Administrator for Space Operations Mission Directorate/W.
Chief Engineer/Dr Ryschkewitsch
Chief Financial Officer/Mr. Bowie (Acting)
Chief Health and Medical Officer/Dr. Williams
Chief Information Officer/Ms. Pettus

* Director, Integrated Enterprise Management Program/Deputy CIO
Mr. German

Chief Safety and Mission Assurance/Mr. O’Connor
Chief of Strategic Communications/Mr. Hopkins

* Assistant Administrator for Communications and Planning/Mr.
* Assistant Administrator for Education/Dr. Winterton
* Assistant Administrator for Legislative and Intergovernmental
Affairs/Mr. Bruner (Acting)
* Assistant Administrator for Public Affairs/D. Mould

Director, Innovative Partnerships Program Office/Mr. Comstock
Director, Office of Program and Institutional Integration/Mr. Keegan
General Counsel/Mr. Wholley
Inspector Genera/Mr. Cobb

Directors, NASA Centers:

Ames Research Center/Dr. Worden
Dryden Flight Research Center/Mr. Petersen
Glenn Research Center/Dr. Whitlow
Goddard Space Flight Center/Dr. Weiler
Jet Propulsion Laboratory/Dr. Elachi
Johnson Space Center/Mr. Coats
Kennedy Space Center/Mr. Parsons
Langley Research Center/Ms. Roe
Marshall Space Flight Center/Mr. King
Stennis Space Center/Dr. Gilbrech

cc: Director, Strategic Investments/Mr. Shank
Executive Secretariat/Mr. Box
Office of the Administrator/Ms. Mays
Office of the Administrator/Ms. Sweeney
Office of the Deputy Administrator/Dr. Keiser
Office of the Deputy Administrator/Ms. Potter

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