Change Management

I almost called this post “To change or not to change”, but evolution is inevitable – it’s really come down to how you go about making the move from old to new, good to great, etc. And here’s my example: recently Gap changed its logo. They wanted to reflect the modern, edgy direction they’ve been heading in over the past year. The logo moved away from its classic all capital white letters in a navy box, to black title case lettering, a white background and a blue square in the top right corner. They confidently put the new design created for them by Laird & Partners up on their website only to meet with tons of negative backlash from a number of people across multiple social media communities.

So what did Gap do wrong? And more importantly, how did they deal with the situation? After neglecting to involve their customers, or at least warn them of this significant decision, Gap made the most of a negative situation. They asked for input, feedback, and alternate designs from all who had complained, commented or been following the conversation. They made the best possible move – they allowed their loyal followers to contribute to the brand they clearly feel strongly about.

Gap is not the first company to go after a new look and feel in order to stay current, and they won’t be the last. But I think it’s become clear that the way companies pursue evolving brand identities is definitely in the process of changing.

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