Rebrands are almost inevitable for brands with a popular presence or who are veterans to the industry. Rebrands are a way to keep your brand fresh, up to date, and can reignite excitement with your customers and perhaps attract new ones. There's no solid formula for a successful rebrand, however, it's easy to spot at first glance if a rebrand has succeeded or failed. From the list below, you'll probably be able to see for yourself the difference between stellar (and less than stellar) rebranding efforts.
Google did a great job of translating their traditional and well known logo into a modern format. With the steady increase of Google's influence since the early 2010's, Google didn't stray too far from their early concept, and were clever to keep the colour scheme the same.
If you're old enough to remember when Apple was still referred to as Macintosh, you were probably filled with pride watching Apple's journey to becoming the symbol of simplicity and innovation. Yet another example of a simple rebrand, but instead, apple changes the colours and keeps the shape of the logo the same.
Adidas' rebrand branches a bit farther out than Apple and Google, but keeps the general positioning of the logo elements the same. Certain design features have been echoed in the new logo, like the three breaks - keeping some form of familiarity to the new rebrand.
Instagram completely transformed the logo around the same general icon of the old camera. While the sunset color scheme initially faced some backlash, the color has become the iconic identifier for other compatible apps like Boomerang and Layout.
Mastercard's logo received a touch up, which just cleaned up the original design. The colors and the format are generally the same, but the overlap has been changed to a harmonious blend of the two, as well as the font being polished into a more modern typeface.
Windows has opted to go closer to the concept of the name. Though the new logo looks nothing like the early ones, the logo is still (if not more) representative of the name. The simple mono colored window is clean, professional, and fits right in on new keyboards with the added Windows button.
By now, you've probably seen the branding document that made Pepsi's new logo a laughingstock, however, the logo was universally rejected for the same reasons Coca-Cola drinkers rebelled against New Coke - they underestimated the nostalgia. The balance and harmony of the even logo was swapped out for an asymmetrical icon, which has customers making their own assumptions of what the logo represents. The rebrand could have been clever if the new typeface was used next to the old logo, as the ‘e’ in pepsi echoes design elements from the original logo.
The once simple and clean logo has become cluttered and illegible. The new font itself is not visually displeasing, but the conglomeration of the letters together makes the logo appear rounded in certain places. For instance, the 'R' and second ‘A’ seemingly form a ‘B’ to look like 'ZABA' instead of 'ZARA'. Overall the provides strain on the eyes to make out the individual letters.
You may or my not remember this fiasco, but it wasn't around for that long. With the customer backlash in response to the new logo, Gap didn't realize the danger of a rebrand just for the sake of a rebrand. While rebrands may be used to refresh a brand, they must be conducted delicately, carefully and with great attention. The logo strayed so far from the original format with what seemed like no explanation or reason.
Early on, Tropicana had formed the bulk of their identity around ads and campaigns with lively oranges and the classic red and white straw. There's nothing familiar left on the Orange Juice box besides a leaf on top of the logo. Each little change was drastic, making the finished product work against itself. Had Tropicana done something simple, like keep the original font and make the words 2D instead of 3D, their rebranding efforts may have resonated with buyers.
Knowing when to rebrand is the first step, but knowing how and what to rebrand is apart of the equation. While some brands may require a complete rebrand, others may only need a touch up, refresh or a translation of their brand into the modern taste. Always consider your reasons for a rebrand before instilling change - the outcomes can permanently damage your brand if not planned carefully.