Friday, January 7, 2011

Starbucks Joins the Logo Redesign Fray

By now, everyone has either heard or read the latest news announced by Starbucks. To celebrate the company’s 40th anniversary, Starbucks has redesigned its logo. The corporate name (Starbucks) and the company’s main product (coffee) have both been removed from the logo, but the original image of the company (the siren) remains.

According to the Starbucks website, “The Siren has been a part of Starbucks from the beginning. Her image, originally derived from a twin-tailed siren in an old sixteenth-century Norse woodcut, was at the center of Starbucks original logo. She embodies Starbucks and our coffee – evoking coffee’s allure and its seafaring tradition.”

Over the last 40 years, there is no question that Starbucks has built an incredibly strong brand. The company serves coffee, food, and products in its stores around the world –more than 15,000 in 50 countries, according to the company’s website. In addition, Starbucks has created unique partnerships and sells products in affiliated locations other than its stand-alone coffee-houses, such as, banks and supermarkets. The logo represents quality coffee, a commitment to global responsibility, a dedication to creating and maintaining a diverse corporate culture, and creating a warm and welcoming place for people to connect.

If the mission of Starbucks is “to inspire and nurture the human spirit – one person, one cup, and one neighborhood at a time,” why would Starbucks choose to lose the core elements of its brand when redesigning its logo? A green siren will not represent the company in the same manner as when the name and key product were included. The word Starbucks is critical to the company’s brand – or in other words, its connection to its consumers and fans.

If Starbucks wanted to change its logo as part of its 40th anniversary celebration, perhaps, it should have added design elements that highlighted its mission – a person, a cup, or a neighborhood. However, the secret may be out: Starbucks hired the graphic design team from The Gap, since this logo redesign is reminiscent of The Gap’s proposed logo that appeared one week during October 2010, only to disappear the following week.

Read the announcement in Starbucks’ own words:

1 comment:

  1. Why do I like the new Starbucks logo? It's purely a practical issue. The new logo is more scalable and easily imprinted in a variety of scenarios. This is something that I always recommend to clients to make their visual branding consistent across the board.


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