Do you remember all of that drama that was caused by Starbucks and their textless logo a few months back? Well, Maria Rainier does and she has decided to write a guest post about it here. She goes over all of the things that we can take from it.
Maria's biography will be at the bottom of the post.
On January 5th, Starbucks unveiled its new logo: a green stylized mermaid—er, excuse me, siren—much like the one we know so well and look upon fondly as we drink our morning caffeine boost, but without the brand name or the word “coffee.”
The uproar is reminiscent of Gap’s latest logo no-no. The clothing company scrapped its new version (check it and a corresponding article out here: http://www.csmonitor.com/Business/new-economy/2010/1008/Gap-logo-changes-renaissance-or-mistake) in just a week’s time after fans of the company squawked up a storm.
Starbucks’ Facebook page has exploded with fire-spitting and support alike, but consumers and business experts are more optimistic for the coffee queen mermaid, er, siren. Unlike Gap, which has “lost its luster” according to Laura Oswald, director of Chicago-based marketing research company Marketing Semiotics, Starbucks is at the top of its game. “The brand is as strong as ever right now,” she says, which is likely why Starbucks dropped its name from the green ring that once encircled the siren. “All you need to do is see the apple and you think of Apple computers. With the Nike icon . . . the swoosh. The brand is so strong, it doesn’t need to have the name on the logo.”
Despite its lull in 2008 and 2009, Starbucks has suffered little in the economic recession, and as the clouds part over the US economy, the company may be determined to come back standing tall. Who needs text when you know the logo?
Being Bold With Your Brand
Starting businesses don’t need to worry about proudly bearing their logo sans text for a decent span of time (it took Starbucks 40 years). Still, isn’t it every businessperson’s castle-in-the-sky to be behind the logo of a brand that every Jane, John, and John Doe, Jr. can recognize?
The road to Brand Behemoth status is long and arduous, paved with patience and made with marketing ability. Starbucks didn’t always do the right thing (CEO Howard Schultz is the first to admit that mistakes were made to lead to the 2008 and 2009 performance lull).
Conversation Leads to Traffic
By habitually keeping ongoing conversations with the public, however, they were able to revamp—no, revolutionize—the old cuppa joe into a national ritual. Even if public feedback for the new logo is mixed, it’s feedback all the same (and luckily balanced with healthy, satisfied customer reviews). Nancy Koehn of the Harvard Business Review says that Schultz knew long before Internet marketing, social media, and customer ownership of brands that “sustaining a meaningful, dynamic connection between consumers and the brand is all important.”
So, what can you do? What does this mean for you? Close the distance between your brand and your customers via blogging, guest blogging, inviting guest blogging, and replying to comments anyone might have left on your company site or blog. Business, like blogging, is a conversation. A one-way road won’t get you traffic because eventually, you’ll just hit a dead end. Two-way traffic is the way to get places.
Bio: Maria Rainier is a freelance writer and blog junkie. She is currently a resident blogger at First in Education and performs research surrounding online degrees. In her spare time, she enjoys square-foot gardening, swimming, and avoiding her laptop.