The new Pepsi logos are on the bottles and in the market, so I thought I’d give Pepsi logos a revisit.
I said logos because apparently there isn’t one Pepsi logo, but several in fact. More on this in a little bit.
Back in early November 2008, I wrote about how Pepsi was using social media to promote its logo change with relative decent results. Here’s the link to that article Pepsi 25 Social Media Rebranding Campaign. Despite some discontent from a few people in both social media camp and branding camp, I thought the Pepsi campaign had guts, creativity and potential for great success.
Now that I see the new Pepsi logos on actual products, I do have some hesitation to call the new look great, though I think the rebranding effort remains generally good. There are plenty of discussions around the web about why people like or don’t like it. See some examples in this post Pepsi, New Bottles at underconsideration.com, and this post Thoughts about Pepsi on LoveDesignLove.com.
Here’s the deal with the multiple logos. According to AdAge.com and reported on underconsideration.com, Pepsi “pour some $1.2 billion over three years into a push that will include sweeping changes to its brands, including what Chairman-CEO Indra Nooyi characterized as a revamp of ‘every aspect of the brand proposition for our key [carbonated soft drink] brands. How they look, how they’re packaged, how they will be merchandised on the shelves, and how they connect with consumers.’”
“The white band in the middle of the logo will now loosely form a series of smiles. A “smile” will characterize brand Pepsi, while a “grin” is used for Diet Pepsi and a “laugh” is used for Pepsi Max. Also, Mountain Dew will be rebranded as Mtn Dew. The news was first reported in Beverage Digest.”
I guess the “smile” version is the official corporate logo, as used on the Pepsi website, while the “grin” and “laugh” are only product variations. Beverage companies traditionally have different logos/brands for their different product lines (Pepsi, Mtn Dew – not Mountain Dew anymore, and Gatorade, to name a few), but never within a line. It looks like Pepsi is taking a big step to have different logos for a regular, diet, and the Max drinks. This is a big change and signifies an expanding viewpoint that could allow them lots of flexibilities in the future.
In the end people will just have to give themselves time to not dislike the new Pepsi logos. Just like the Honda Element or Mercedes-Benz G-Class. People hated them when they first came out. Now they’re popular vehicles. On the other hand, I can’t say the same for the Pontiac Aztek, which I don’t think ever escaped from its ugliness. Anyway, I think the new Pepsi logos will not follow the fate of the latter. And for Pepsi fans, as long as they get their fix, nothing else matters much. For the non-fans, they’re already helping Pepsi by talking up the new logo. So Pepsi can’t lose. For me I think the smile, grin and laugh may be cute, but they dilute the impact of a strong single logo usage.
By the way, Pepsi fan or not, I’m sure you’ll enjoy the images below: Pepsi logo evolution and the classic Pepsi cans. For an interesting overview of the history of the logo, head over to Pepsi Logo at logoblog.org.