There are very few things that get me riled up. One of those things is bad business branding. As an avid coffee drinker, I am fascinated with the way coffee company’s have changed over the past few decades. Last night, while browsing my Twitter feed I saw a link posted by Calvin Freitas to an article about the new branding Seattle’s Best Coffee has just started to roll out.
To give some brief history, Seattle’s Best Coffee company originated from a Whidbey Island coffee company called “Whidbey Island Wet Whisker”. Over the past thirty years, the name has changed three times, as did the branding each time.
In 1983, a family purchased “Whidbey Island Wet Whisker” changing the name to Stewart Brothers Coffee. In 1994, the name was once again changed to Seattle’s Best Coffee. Ever since this change, the branding and logo has remained someone constant. Now, 16 years later, the company has decided it needs a more modern looking logo and a new branding strategy?
Whidbey Island Wet Whisker —> Stewart Brothers Coffee —> Seattle’s Best Coffee
Here is the proposed new logo.
This is a stupid idea. Not only is the proposed logo ugly, but it nearly diminishes the brand created over the past two decades. For the past 16 years, the company has been branded in a way that creates a homey yet urban feel. With this branding Seattle’s Best Coffee has created a very loyal following. Growing up accustomed to the original and constant logo, I can’t imagine the company with anything different.
The proposed logo tries to be modern, hip, and trendy – depleting the values of family that the company was once founded on. I understand that the tech scene is large within the Seattle community – but this do NOT mean that coffee cups should have a web 2.0 like logo.
Appalled, I posted the link to my Facebook profile. Here are a few of the reactions I received.
If a customer has been loyal to your brand for years, why would you re-brand the product and give them something unfamiliar? I do not see how forcing a customer to “startover” with your brand can do any good for your bottom line. Growing up with original Seattle’s Best logo, I do not see how any other logo could possibly resonate the same way. Terrible branding idea on their part.
Million dollars of marketing dollars have already been spent to portray the company in a certain light. Why would you throw away the loyalty you have already created? Seattle’s Best please don’t make this mistake. Change is not always for the best.
What do YOU think of the new logo?