The burger chain, Wendy’s has given its logo a makeover. Well it’s not really a makeover, more of a touchup. They are not the first company to do this. Gap did it a couple of years ago (and turned it into a branding disaster that you can read about here), RHB and Maybank have made minor changes to their brands recently as well.
When I saw the new Wendy’s logo I checked out the old to see what it looked like. I don’t think Wendy’s promotes itself much in Malaysia so the logo isn’t really familiar to me.
The old logo, created in 1983 was really dated. It reminded me of old fashioned pub signs in England. It was boxy, with outdated fonts and weak colour coordination and the girl, who is the focal point of the logo had an almost Victorian look about her.
The new logo has done away with the pub sign look and feel and is much more contemporary. It retains the brand name but the name is now in a less formal red font on a plain white background but retains ‘the wave’ (when a font moves from left to right in an upward direction).
The girl is more pronounced and less stiff. Her formal, Victorian dress has some colour but is less prominent, she’s still a redhead but seems more natural which may reflect a future brand direction.
Interestingly, there is no reference to what the brand does which may make business development a challenge, especially in South East Asia. Unless of course the brand is planning a change in direction. Or maybe the new look and feel won’t be applied to South East Asia.
I often wonder if these brand makeovers are really worth the trouble. After all, we have to assume every Wendy’s restaurant around the world will change all its livery. Every signboard, truck, van, car etc will have to be redesigned too.
All the menus, napkins, cups, letterheads, envelopes, business cards and uniforms – Wendy’s employs over 150,000 people worldwide – will have to be updated.
Wendy’s is projecting it will renovate half of its 1,425 locations by 2015. So we can assume the other half will take as long again so the process could take more than 6 years to be finalized.
That’s a lot of effort, not to mention money to change a logo that will probably need to be changed again when the project is finshed.
It makes me wonder if logos are still relevant. What do you think?