Why are brands going backwards?
Have you noticed lately, some massive brands have ditched the modern brands they’ve become for flatter, more simple designs?
What is going on with the world of branding?
BT are just one of the massive, multinational companies who seem to be going through an identity crisis right now.
The history of BT’s branding is wide and varied, starting with the iconic T which symbolised the telegraph pole, moving to the piper in the 90’s and in the early 2000’s to the ‘connected world’.
The connected world brand made sense, a telecoms company with a global reach, connecting people all over the world with each other, I felt at, the time I worked for BT an affinity for its brand, its identity & by proxy, its purpose, this new brand doesn’t say anything too me. It certainly doesn’t excite me about what BT can offer me!
Are Other’s doing this?
Yes! Brands across the world, in all kinds of industries are changing the way they look, how they feel & what their graphical message is. It seems its working for some, but for others, like in the case of BT, they seem to have completely abandoned their identities for simplicity.
It completely makes sense to modernise and perhaps to some extent embrace the 2D nature of the screen. A trait which is increasingly modernist when it comes to branding. 3D, more ‘graphical’ logos and branding are becoming increasingly rare.
When Netflix changed their logo, for a flatter, more modern design, this made sense, it fitted their purpose, maintained their existing identity & just flattened it, making it transparent and multi screen type friendly.
Sometimes, it works and makes total sense, other times, it really doesn’t add up to a great idea & I feel could be super damaging to a brand, its reputation and its message.
Going backwards in branding is good but dangerous.Jay Gordon-Rolfe
Its a little complicated from a brand perspective, perfecting, refining & maintaining a brand is one thing, if that means cleaning a logo up, flattening it out or even changing it to a more simplistic design, providing it delivers the same message or the current message of the brand, its great! If you’re doing it to make a statement like “Because we’re so big it doesn’t really matter” which is what the BT change feels like to me… its almost certainly a terrible idea.
If, like in the case of BT – you end up with a brand which actively attracts ridicule, what do you do next? Where do you go & how do you recover?
All I’m going to say, in closing, as a digital professional & massive brand enthusiast is this… Please be careful. Put more thought into it than BT seem to have & for goodness sake – don’t loose who you are & your brands identity in becoming more modern when you don’t need to!