In 2010 clothes retailer Gap scrapped a new logo design it had rolled out after just one week.
The original logo, having been used for 20 years or so was a very well known example of a successful brand on the high street.
It was simple yet elegant and not overstated, a blue box with the word ‘GAP’ written in white inside.
The newly rolled out logo kept the blue box but it was now significantly smaller. It sat behind the word ‘GAP’ now written in black lettering.
Critics and customers immediately attacked the rebranding exercise, taking advantage of social networks such as facebook and twitter to share their new found discomfort.
More than 2000 comments were posted on the company’s facebook page.
Many demanded a return to the older logo design.
Gap responded hastily and reverted back to the old design.
Marka Hansen, president of Gap Brand North America, explained the action reminding us, “We’ve been listening to and watching all of the comments this past week. We heard them say over and over again they are passionate about our blue box logo, and they want it back.”
“So we’ve made the decision to do just that – we will bring it back across all channels.”
He also acknowledged missing the opportunity to engage with the online community during the process.
The ‘look’ of a retailer
So what went wrong?
Clearly, The GAP Brand is a much loved part of the retail industry throughout much of the world.
People are accostumed to identifying it in a certain way or with certain colours etc. Perhaps the new design ventured too far from the established look of the retailer.
This fact, combined with the theory that today more than ever consumers can vent their feelings and opinions on social networks at lighting fast speed suggests that companies need to definitely keep their consumers tastes in mind when considering a design relaunch or rebranding exercise.
Gap have suggested trying to rebrand again some time in the future.
All eyes will be on that outcome whatever it may turn out to be.
January 11 2011 07:33 pm | Xtra