After thousands of comments, Facebook postings, Tweets and media articles bashing the new design, Gap decided to return to its original logo featuring the tall, white block letters in the navy blue box. The redesign even spawned two parody accounts on Twitter, @gaplogo and @oldgaplogo, with 5,067 and 793 followers, respectively, at the time of this posting.
Gap made this announcement on its Facebook page and acknowledged that the passionate outcry from consumers prompted the company to do an aboutface:
“Ok. We’ve heard loud and clear that you don’t like the new logo. We’ve learned a lot from the feedback. We only want what’s best for the brand and our customers. So instead of crowd sourcing, we’re bringing back the Blue Box tonight.” (Gap Facebook page, Oct. 11)
The company took a lot of heat for not properly testing the new design with consumers and failing to appropriately gauge consumer feedback. Gap acknowledged its mistake in a company statement:
“We’ve learned a lot in this process. And we are clear that we did not go about this in the right way. We recognize that we missed the opportunity to engage with the online community. This wasn’t the right project at the right time for crowd sourcing.”
Funnily enough even Vanity Fair wrote an obituary for the short-lived new logo (posted on CNN.com):
“The new Gap logo is survived by its antagonistic Twitter feed and a dozen ‘failed branding strategies’ slide shows, in which it will be archived in the annals of history,” the magazine wrote. “To heaven, the Helvetica now ascends.”
Wow, what a way to go, new Gap logo!
Interesting how a well-meaning corporate step to evolve a brand resulted in an embarrassing situation for the company, and how many voices in the social media universe united to broadcast the same message, “change it back!” It made me wonder: What motivates people to become so passionate about a brand? And how does this impact their behavior? Even if the design changes on the outside, does this impact the product on the inside? Even if the new Gap logo stuck and it had that little oddly placed blue square on the sign, can’t I still get my favorite boot-cut jeans and winter sweaters at the store?
Clothing retailer Belk unveiled its logo recently as well, changing from a teal cursive-style font to an all-lowercase, rounder font with three blue flower petals next to the “b.” The logo unveiling has thus far prompted a few hundred comments on Belk’s FB page and on Twitter, and produced several media articles. But it has not prompted the surge of activity that Gap’s resign did.
Perhaps the real test lies in the pursestrings of the shopper. Do you have any logos of favorite brands that you’re passionate about?