Gap's logo has gone to scrap

by Shawn Paul Wood

Following a post about the kerfuffle Gap had caused America's shoppers, it seems the global retailer has wisened up (and possibly fired its marketing peeps).

According to a press release from Ms. Marka Hansen, president of Gap Brand North America, "Uh, sorry. We was just kiddin'." (That might be paraphrased.)

Last week, we moved to address the feedback and began exploring how we could tap into all of the passion [concerning the logo change]. Ultimately, we've learned just how much energy there is around our brand.

The Web exploded and apparel aficionados were irate. Let's get this straight: That ballyhoo was created not only because the logo was changing but also because of to what it was changing.

You know Ms. Hansen, the "passion" and "feedback" would have been different if the new logo presented didn't look like ClipArt from a Commodore 64 or something.

However, her mea culpa did reveal some truism in there for all of us:

And we are clear that we did not go about this in the right way. We recognize that we missed the opportunity to engage with the online community.  This wasn’t the right project at the right time for crowd sourcing.

Branding 101 will tell you one perfunctory fact: If you have a brand people have embraced, hug them back by never jacking with it.

Why aren't the golden arches a new shape? Why isn't the Nike swoosh a different Greek movement? Why doesn't Chevy use a different shape to showcase its hoods?

And for the love of God, someone please tell me, why "The New Formula Coke" wasn't the first case study sent inner-office mail by her marketing and branding team?

One thing is for sure, if that was a test balloon for a brand change, I'm certain Gap will stay grounded and stick to selling clothes my kids will love for years to come.

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