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Go.com gets ready for its close-up

Walt Disney's Internet division will announce tomorrow that it has hired two firms to explore ways to revamp its image, in an effort to re-brand itself as an entertainment and lifestyle destination.

Walt Disney Internet division Go.com will announce tomorrow that it has hired two firms to explore ways to revamp its image, in an effort to re-brand itself as an entertainment and lifestyle destination.

The company said it has hired Web design firm Razorfish to spruce up its site and to develop a new logo. In addition, Go.com has retained Cliff Freeman & Partners to begin developing a refurbished consumer advertising campaign for the site. Freeman's previous ad campaigns of note included the famous "Where's the beef?" slogan for fast-food restaurant Wendy's and "Pizza, Pizza" for the Little Caesar's pizza chain.

With the planned redesign, the company aims to point people more heavily toward the Disney-owned brands under its umbrella. But the site will continue to include general information, such as weather and stock quotes, according to Judy Fearing, Go.com's senior vice president of marketing.

Go.com's moves come after its decision in January to change its Web strategy. The company decided it would focus more on entertainment, using content from its numerous Web sites, which include ESPN.com, Disney Online and ABCNews.com.

"We are focusing on bringing our marketing resources together as we prepare for refocusing the Go.com portal for entertainment and living," Fearing said.

Before its change in strategy, Go.com tried marketing itself as a general information Web portal along the lines of Yahoo, AOL.com, Lycos and Excite. Go.com ranks sixth among top Web sites, with 22.7 million unique visitors in January, according to Internet data-gathering company Media Metrix.

Go.com's decision to change its logo follows a legal battle with search engine GoTo.com. A federal judge issued an injunction against Disney last year after finding that the media giant's logo too closely resembled GoTo.com's image.