Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Rebranding Round Two - Kraft

Food Giant Unveils New Look for Corporate Communications. But what does it really mean in the long term.

Kraft Foods became the latest in a string of marketers to unveil a smiley-face style corporate logo. Pepsi of course (see below) and even Walmart last year rebranded with a glowing sun.

The logo is a result of what the company calls a "co-creation process" with consumers, employees, ad agency Nitro, London and another shop, Promise, whose location couldn't immediately be identified.

The accompanying tagline on the logo will be "Make today delicious."

It will appear only in corporate communications and on the company's website and will not grace the packages of the company's products, such as Jell-O or Kraft mayonnaise; they will maintain the familiar red, white and blue logo.

No marketing program is planned around the new corporate look, which Kraft CEO Irene Rosenfeld said captures the "essence of Kraft Foods."

"During the past two years, we've built a solid foundation by reinvesting in our brands, putting a new organization in place and improving our cost structure," she said. "As the next step in our turnaround, we're adding three new ingredients to our recipe for success: a higher purpose that acts as a common call to action, values in action that guide our behavior, and a new look and feel to visually depict our renewed energy."

The company declined to provide the cost of developing the new logo. The design, a red smile at the end of the Kraft Foods name, has a "colorful flavor burst" at the end that resembles a flower.

Frankly, I find the logo idea confusing.

Kraft unwisely ditched decades years of brand equity when it dumped the General Foods corporate brand, and now it has to confuse customers again by changing the look of the familiar Kraft logo. What a waste of effort.

Writes Adweek's Elaine Wong; the latest logo, however, is an attempt by Kraft to distinguish between its corporate and product brand identity. Okay.

The new Kraft logo design consists of an red colored, upward-moving swoosh representing a smile which explodes into an array of seven "flavor bursts," each of which represents a different business segment of Kraft. The newly designed logo will begin appearing on the back and side panels of Kraft-branded foods worldwide in the coming weeks and months.

If I ever heard corporate babble, this might be some of the best; "In some ways, this really is all about Kraft Foods. It's about our next step in the evolution of getting ourselves to top-tier performance. Going forward, it defines, unifies and simplifies our employees and gets everyone thinking about one common purpose," Kraft's chief marketing officer Mary Beth West said of their new brand identity.

The new logo design of the food company was conceived as part of an extensive design process, in which more than 7,000 Kraft employees and consumers worldwide were asked for their feedback… No way they got everyone on the same page. I gather that more employees looked at their job security then what will a rebrand do.

Consumers of Kraft in cities like Chicago, Paris and Shanghai were asked questions such as: "What do you look for in a food company?" "How do you engage with food generally?" and "What are the moments of that relationship that are important to you?"The findings of these studies resulted in a corporate logo design that is "more contemporary, the colors are more vibrant and it has a life to it," West said. The old blue, white and red Kraft Foods logo design will remain as the product logo only on Kraft-branded products such as salad dressing, West said.

Kraft Foods, one of the largest food and beverage companies in the world unveiled yesterday a new corporate logo. I emphasize early that the change applies only at the corporate level, the uppercase oblong logo, used for both the corporate and brand identity, will stay as the consumer brand, so you won't miss it when you are buying your Macaroni & Cheese. So let's get started with some press releasing.

With a new purpose and values setting a fresh direction, Kraft Foods also gave its corporate logo a facelift to more clearly deliver "delicious." Starting today, people around the world will begin to see the new identity that deliciously features a smile, the natural reaction to delicious foods and experiences, and a colorful flavor burst. It signals to employees, consumers and investors what the new Kraft Foods is all about.

- from Kraft Corporate Press Release

I am finding very little if anything good to say about the new logo — if I had to dig really deep… the lowercase "k" is pretty, but that's about it. Overall, the logo is "weak-kneed" for such a large corporation. The red "smile," the colorful burst,

they are all there and intended to be friendly to a degree they seem childish. And, oh my god, don't get me started on the tagline font… is that Tekton? I haven't seen that typeface used in at least 30 years and if any one of my students used it the comment would read, "REDO – SEE ME".

Brandweek has a nice slideshow of all of Kraft's previous logos.

New Walmart Logo - Do you see the font likeness and the "sun/flowerburst" image likeness:

No comments:

TNB | Distributed by Deluxe Templates