The Evolution of Starbucks

I don’t know if you saw, but Starbucks unveiled a new logo yesterday.  I heard it first from my own local Starbucks baristas just this morning when I stopped in for my normal Grande cup of Pike blend.  The baristas had been huddled in the back and as they returned to the floor they informed me that they had been admiring the newly unveiled logo.  That’s right, in keeping with the spirit of strategic marketing, the Starbucks siren will no longer be sharing her space with the “Starbucks Coffee” text.  What a feat that a brand continues to evolve to a point of almost total ubiquity and to a point that the logo no longer requires words as a means of identification with the consumer.  In fact, the strategy behind the transformation, according to CEO Howard Schultz, is in essence to avoid limiting Starbucks to just coffee as the logo has always portrayed and to open up even more opportunity for diversification in the marketplace.  How is it that a move like this works for some companies and not others?  Is it simply a matter of creative design?  Perhaps you heard about the recent change that G.A.P. made to their logo.  Within a week they were back to their traditional logo due to the outrage among consumers over the seemingly unnecessary and thoughtless design change.  That situation definitely seemed to lend itself to the old adage, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”  Will Starbucks be any different?  Will their strategy prove to be sound or will they be following suit with G.A.P. in another week?  The opinions of the consumer can sometimes be unpredictable, but whether you are for, against, or indifferent to the evolution of the Starbucks brand and the new and improved logo, hopefully you are able to appreciate the depth of the strategic thinking behind this recent move.

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Posted by: Stephanie

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