Why Doritos, Diet Coke and Cadbury are Stripping the Words Out of Their Logos
A brand’s logo is a critical part of its graphic look and feel. Think about how many brands you can identify by its logo alone. A good logo is instantly recognizable and conveys a lot of information about what your company does and what it stands for. Brands put a lot of energy and resources into developing a logo with staying power.
But some of the world’s most recognizable brands have recently taken to tweaking their established identities to send a different message to their audiences. Like Mastercard earlier this year, these brands hope that by removing the words from their logos and packaging, they can start conversations.
Doritos’ Anti-Ad Ad Campaign
Doritos stripped its name and tagline in what it’s dubbed an “anti-ad” campaign designed to appeal to Gen Z consumers and a new marketing reality. The campaign replaces the branding with other Doritos signifiers like nacho cheese dust and iconic triangles from the pyramids to traffic signs.
Coca Cola Starts a Conversation About Labels
Coca Cola is making a cultural statement in its recent [Unlabeled] campaign by removing labels from Diet Coke cans. “We’re removing our own labels to start a conversation about labels,” Coke says.
Cadbury Shines a Spotlight on Loneliness
Cadbury is using a wordless-logo to highlight the brand’s efforts to combat elderly loneliness in the U.K. The brand is “donating its words” and a share of proceeds to the cause. Research sponsored by the brand found that hundreds of thousands of elderly people often go a week without a face-to-face interaction.
In all three cases, the campaigns are a big bet on existing brand identity. That’s a safer bet for these giant household names. Lots of smaller companies and B2B brands tweak their look all the time and fail to grab headlines.
But there’s a valuable lesson for companies of all sizes in the power of connecting your brand’s evolution to issues and causes your customers care about. Your company’s logo and look and feel is an opportunity to promote what you are (or are not) saying.
Long story short: The way your brand looks means something – and your customer knows it. A smart tweak to a logo, a revamped color palette or a cultural campaign can help a brand stay relevant and keep up with its customers’ changing values and expectations.