With the recent uproar that came when G.A.P. changed their logo and then decided to change it back to the original, due to unhappy customers. I couldn’t help but ask the question… “What Where They Thinking?!”…
Well, there are many things we could cover, but I really want us to think about our own logos and are they effective or not? I found something interesting over at NueroMarketing.com in an article titled New Gap Logo A Neuro Failure.
In this article, Dr. A.K. Pradeep, NeuroFocus CEO and author of The Buying Brain, identified six ways the new Gap logo violated what the neuromarketing firm considers to be best practices based on their research:
Overlays Equal Overlooked: Neuroscience research reveals that when words overlay images, the brain tends to ignore or overlook the word in favor of focusing on the image. “In the new logo, the ‘p’ superimposed over the blue square is essentially bypassed by the brain; the brain tends to ignore the word in favor of the image. Not a good thing when that’s your brand name.”
Sharp Edges Unsettle the Subconscious: “Forcing the brain to view a sharply-angled box behind the letter ‘p’ provokes what neuroscience calls an ‘avoidance response’. The hard line cuts into the rounded shape of the letter. We are hard-wired to avoid sharp edges — in nature, they can present a threat. Our so-called modern brains are actually 100,000 years old, and they retain this primordial reaction.”
Interesting Fonts Work: Neuroscience research has shown that the subconscious prefers fonts that are a little unusual. The Gap’s original typeface was just different enough that it tended to stand out to the brain amidst the clutter of other corporate IDs. “Being a little bit ‘funky’ appeals to the brain, and the Gap’s original design accomplished that by employing an interesting font. Our study confirms that, and shows why ‘boring’ is bad for business when it comes to type.”
High/Low Contrast: “The original logo presented the brand name in sharp, strong contrast — white letters ‘pop’ against the blue background, and the brain loves pop-outs. Conversely, the new logo has the ‘p’ losing that contrast against the blue box. Again, the brain simply tends not to register the letter well as a result.”
Stronger Semantic Content: “In the new version, the capitalized ‘G’ followed by the lower case ‘a’ and ‘p’ cause the brain to read the three letters as part of a word, and therefore seek semantic content. In the original execution, all three letters are capitalized, making them more logo-like than word-like, which is what you want for a logo.”
Lost Legacy: “The Gap sells a lot more than just blue jeans today, but relegating the blue of the original logo to minor ‘legacy’ status in the new version loses that essential connection in the consumer’s subconscious to the brand’s core origins. We always emphasize to companies: depict your source. When it comes to products, the brain seeks to know from whence you came. Instead of honoring their past, unfortunately the Gap relegated that past to lower relevance.” [Entire news release: Brain Gap: NeuroFocus Study Reveals What Went Wrong With the Gap's New Brand Logo.]
Pretty interesting huh!? I hope this gives you a lot to think about with your own logo. Here at iBoost I am currently having our logo redone. The original was a very rush job and I know it can be much better in how it connects with people and how it expresses our brand.
Don’t ever underestimate the importance of your logo and don’t ever make changes without doing your homework!
I would love to hear your thoughts about all of this, please leave me a comment below!