Calling Gap’s Bluff
Several days ago, Gap announced that it was changing its iconic logo to a Helvetica based, blue box thing. Chaos ensued and thousands of fans lashed out against the brand, as I am sure you have heard. In an attempt to please fans, Gap bounced back saying it would then crowd source an even newer logo design and leave the choice up to the fan community.
After letting this idea stir for a bit, Gap then again released a statement saying that the company would be sticking with the original logo after all. You can read part of the press release below:
“At Gap brand, our customers have always come first. We’ve been listening to and watching all of the comments this past week. We heard them say over and over again they are passionate about our blue box logo, and they want it back. So we’ve made the decision to do just that – we will bring it back across all channels.”
All this commotion and in the end Gap is deciding not to change anything? I’m not buying it for several reasons.
Gap has witnessed impressive growth since its first store opened in 1969. The company is generally very attentive to consumer’s desires by putting out clothing that is embraced by the public along with advertising that is usually entertaining. It is not uncommon for famous companies to go through a re-branding that does not bode well with consumers, but this seems a bit different.
As obvious by the disdain of fans, Gap’s “new” logo was a flop, so much so that the company had to realize that before releasing it. Putting something out there that is so adamantly resented is a rookie mistake, and one I don’t think Gap would make. The “new” logo was so hideous it is hard for me to believe that anyone would have given it the thumbs up. Call me naive, but I still have some faith in humanity. Thus begins my Gap logo conspiracy theory.
I think Gap had this whole scenario planned out all along. They purposely announced a new logo that they knew would solicit negative conversations from Gap’s customers. After the world has seen how passionate Gap fans are about the brand (circa the thousands of tweets and Facebook posts), the company then revokes their initial decision to show how well they listen and cherish the opinions of their fans. In the end, the fans get what they wanted all along and now have a new appreciation for a brand they love. It all just seems too perfectly planned to have been an accident.
Well, I am calling Gap’s bluff, and I am not very happy about it. No one likes to be tricked, and this whole logo controversy seems like one big PR stunt. I can picture Gap’s executives sitting back laughing at all the Gap fans who now think the brand is even greater since they listened and responded to consumer concerns. We are all the pieces in Gap’s big logo puzzle.
Whether or not Gap planned this all from the beginning, we may never know. I now, however, have a negative image of a brand that I otherwise enjoyed. Your plan may have worked for the majority of the public, Gap, but not this guy. If Gap jeans didn’t fit me so well, I probably would not continue to shop their anymore (I’m the worst boycotter ever).
Maybe I am wrong, and this was an accident. That would then just make Gap dumber than I am giving them credit for, so either way they lose in my mind. The hand has been dealt, and Gap may be holding pocket aces, but I just quit so it doesn’t really matter.