Starbucks recently unveiled a logo redesign. As a simpler, refined version of their current logo, they have stripped their brand name from the familiar circle symbol. Initially, I had a WTF moment, but the more and more I took in the new design, the more I began to appreciate it. I do wonder, though, are consumers understanding and familiar enough with the symbol of the Siren for this to work?
Consumer recognition is something that can’t be taken lightly, and while I believe customers can in fact associate a symbol to a brand, it takes patience and time to evolve to such a place. Through the history of Starbucks, they have slowly refined the Siren, taking her from a detailed etching-style image to a clean, graphical symbol, making the current redesign something of a natural birth. But as with any new logo launch, the success of the new logo goes hand-in-hand with it’s execution. For me, a Starbucks experience is not solely about the coffee, but is also represented by the white paper cup that my pipping hot Vanilla Latte is served in. That cup is just as iconic as the logo itself, so if consumers haven’t respond particularly well to the logo as it has been introduced, I have no doubt they will understand it once they hold that white paper cup in their hand with the green logo printed on the side.
It’s a positive evolution for the coffee brand we couldn’t be without. Congratulations on the success, Starbucks!