2012 The Year Of Rebranding & Logo Changes

584 384 Derek Kimball

2012 logo changes top brands

2012 was a year of many logo changes and rebrands for quite a few well known companies. Some for the better, some not so much. You be the judge:

Wendy’s New Logo Design:


wendys new logo design

Wendys, the popular fast food chain, introduced this new logo as part of their branding transformation. While the new logo isn’t going to be implemented on a large scale until March of 2013, it has been tested in certain stores. Here’s what the company itself has to say about their transformation:

“…a contemporary look (that) will be introduced on packaging, advertising, crew uniforms, restaurant signage, menu boards and websites. The evolved design for the logo is contemporary and iconic, as it further emphasizes the Wendy’s cameo while retaining the familiar Wendy’s ‘wave’ design.” – Wendys

Quaker’s New Logo Design:

quaker new logo design

PepsiCo owned breakfast food company “Quaker”, refined their logo this March. The changes included a makeover to the infamous Quaker man, specifically a thinning of his face, a subtle hair trim, and removing a few wrinkles from his face. The double chin was also made less apparent. The logos new background shape suggests a “seal of quality” on every box, says Patrick Rowell (member of Quaker design firm). The inclusion of the “est 1877” is meant to display a sense of tradition.

Domino’s New Logo Design:

dominos new logo design

The recent trend of logo re-designs has been minimalism. This simplistic approach not only applies to the graphic elements of many of these logos, but lately the company name itself. In similar fashion to how Starbucks dropped it’s company name from most of their advertising (now just the mermaid graphic), and JCPenney’s shortening it’s name to JCP; Domino’s has dropped “Pizza” from it’s name. Domino’s appears to be testing their new image in certain stores rather than implementing the change company wide just yet. Their website does have the new logo however.

“We’d like to reach the point where we’re as recognized as the Nike Swoosh or the Golden Arches”. – Domino’s

Twitter’s New Logo Design:

twitter new logo

Twitter revealed their new logo back in June of 2012. The new design is more streamlined, simple, clean, constructed of circular lines, with the bird positioned in more of an upward angle rather than the previous design.

“From now on, this bird will be the universally recognizable symbol of Twitter. (Twitter is the bird, the bird is Twitter),” said Doug Bowman, the company’s creative director. “There’s no longer a need for text, bubbled typefaces, or a lowercase ‘t’ to represent Twitter.”

Arby’s New Logo Design:

arbys new logo

Based on the overwhelming negative reaction to the new Arby’s logo, it appears the company didn’t run a very thorough opinion poll before settling on their strange design. Criticism of the font choice, unnecessary use of 3d, and unsuccessfully trying to make the apostrophe look like a cutting device, were at the top of the list of reasons people don’t like this design. On a side note, at least their new website look nice.

JCP New Logo Design:

jcp new logo

JCPenney shortened their name to JCP as part of a massive rebranding effort earlier in 2012. Their new logo no longer uses the company’s full name. I wrote a post on the JCP logo and rebrand earlier this year, in which I mentioned Forbe’s prediction that that JcPenney “Will be the most interesting retailer of 2012”. Not sure how accurate that prediction was but one thing is for certain, JCP may want to consider finding an image that works for them and sticking with it. This was the company’s 3rd identity in just over 2 years time.

Ebay’s New Logo Design:

ebay new and old logo

A part of Ebay’s recent re-branding included the above logotype; which plays it safe, maybe too safe according to many. Crowdsource website “99 Designs” offered a contest challenging it’s users to come up with a better design than ebay’s new “lame logo”. Apparently crowdsourcing doesn’t offer much better results. Of the total 1722 entries in the contest, none seem to offer anything better.

Microsoft’s New Logo Design:

microsoft old and new logo design

Microsoft’s logo change, the first in 25 years, follows the current trend of clean sans serif type. Here’s what the company had to say about their new identity mark:

“The logotype and the symbol. For the logotype, we are using the Segoe font which is the same font we use in our products as well as our marketing communications. The symbol is important in a world of digital motion. The symbol’s squares of color are intended to express the company’s diverse portfolio of products.” – Microsoft

Below is is a well done demonstration of how the new logo will play into Microsoft’s new branding practices:

DC Comic’s New Logo Design:

dc comics logo designs over the years

DC Comics unveiled their new logo in early 2012, with mixed reviews of course. Die hard comic fans had a lot to say about the change, many of which thought was too corporate looking. Displaying the logo is a creative way however, seems to help curtail that sentiment a bit though.

new dc comics logo mockups

Am I forgetting any prominent companies / brands who had a significant logo change this year? As always, comments are welcome. Thanks for reading.


Derek Kimball

Derek is the founder of DesignBuddy and a full time graphic designer. He specializes in logo creation and visual branding. Over the past 13 years Derek has helped hundreds of clients grow their business and establish a stronger brand identity. View his portfolio, or get in touch. If you'd like to receive an occasional free newsletter with useful design related content, please subscribe here.

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