Acronyms are overplayed and are (best) effective when used in highly impactful names/brands/organizations with brand equity (or other significance) built around them: IRS, CIA, USPS, UPS, FBI, etc.
Hospitals and lesser-known government agencies use acronyms/initial as shorthand to those “insiders” who know/deal with on some level (stakeholders) the organization regularly—as would politicians, board members and specific members of the community. This can work, but these entities are still very much less well known, particularly if they do not commit to the task of branding (i.e. putting money into the effort to own an acronym).
Who knew what FEMA was before 2005? … And if there is a FEMA, why is there then a MEMA (Maryland)? (Random thought)
Most importantly, when members of a particular community are unknown and the brand recognition amongst them is low, it may stand to reason that the primary usage of an acronym positions an organization distances the general public from the significance of the organization, since the name is less focused on intrinsic recognition with the public.
For example: ABC Rentals vs. Plumbing Supply Rentals. (Which name gives a sense — at a glance — of what the company’s primarily positioned to do for the prospective customer?) In this vein, one could say that using acronyms is a nickname of sorts and the public gives the most effective nicknames: FedEx (shortening of the proper name Federal Express—and rebranded as such afterwards because of the saturation with a specific position—overnight package service).
And just looking at my phone and wondering about weather had me thinking about the precarious situation of weather graphics. If it’s sunny 23 hours in a day, but a deluge for the one hour you’re outside, the sun graphic is a #fail. If it rains for the entire day, but the sun peaks through for two hours or more, the stormy graphic is better, I guess. The bias in infographics is to focus on the action, the negative — “what could possibly ruin my day?!”
Meanwhile, based on all that, I’m not expecting to see the sun and I was pleasantly surprised when the sun came out. Pretty cool surprise, but it opened the thoughts on how graphics are so misleading in weather and how when we drill-down information, there is a narrative there that can’t always be encapsulated into a single graphic. Or it can be done so… inaccurately.
Obviously, not all meetings should be two hours max. I mean someone is trying to solve Middle East Peace, but I was in a meeting where, after a certain time, I just felt there’s no reason this meeting should be THIS long. I think every person has this quotient (at different lengths) ticking in their heads. Keep the info utility front-loaded, you know!
Whenever I’m concepting logo design, this quote, attributed to Joseph Stalin (likely under different circumstances) is what I think about because it’s key to come at the problem from such a multitude of angles that one can have a good solution and then impeach it with an even better one.
In that initial stage, it’s quantity that rules the day.