Wise words of wisdom from my Mom! As I embark on the job hunt once again, my Mom reminded me that confidence goes a long way, and that sometimes a mini-makeover is just the confidence boost you need. While pondering my potential personal makeover, I started thinking about what would happen if companies decided to give their brand image a makeover.
The ever-popular debate: to update the brand or not to update the brand, including logos, taglines, color schemes, jingles, mascots, images, etc. Some would argue that the entire point of a brand is to provide recognizable continuity for all aspects of the company, for as long as the company remains viable. Others argue that innovating the brand image with a little face-lift can help reach new markets, and breathe fresh life into a company. I think both are valid arguments, depending on the state of the company. Take Coca-Cola, a company founded over 100 years ago. Their brand image is reliable, All-American, classic, and strong, and they’ve supported this stability by actively upholding and protecting their trademark script letters. Anytime you see that script, you immediately think of Coke. This is the purpose behind the unchanging brand, the ultimate symbol of recognition. Their commercials give you that familiar comfort of a refreshing drink, and you always come back to Coca-Cola Classic. And, if you seek to uphold a brand image of stability, it is probably best to stick with a single image to represent your brand. If however, you seek an image of trendiness, evolution, “fitting in”, and attracting new people, a brand makeover would be a reasonable choice. Naturally, I must turn my attention to the logos presented by Pepsi. While they’ve kept the same color scheme and spherical red, white, and blue, they have significantly altered their look over the years. They’ve also brought in the hottest celebrities for each campaign, and the look of their cans change regularly. Clearly, they’ve been persistent in upholding and protecting a brand that embraces change, and their continual updates enhance this brand identity. I believe either strategy can work for a company, but I think they must make a clear choice about what type of brand identity they want. Companies cannot assume that a makeover will be a fix to problems they encounter, and makeovers should be used as a strategic part of the overall company plan.
So, does your brand image need a makeover, or are you confident that you’ve built a brand image to last a lifetime?