Branding

Jones Knowles Ritchie Burger King Rebrand

When you are asked to rebrand any company or organization it is not something that can be executed quickly. There is quite a bit of strategy that goes into the process, especially when you are rebranding a higher profile, internationally known company. Jones Knowles Ritchie was charged with rebranding Burger King and I have to say the results are fantastic. Everything from billboards to employee uniforms has a distinct and cohesive flair that, in my opinion, gives a nod to the design styling of the late 1970s.

From a strategic point, JKR in collaboration with Burger King set out together to bring to life what Burger King’s commitment is to the food, free from colors, preservatives, and flavors from artificial sources. They wanted to use design to help close the gap between the negative perceptions a lot of people have of fast food, and the positive reality of Burger King’s food story by making the brand feel less synthetic, artificial, cheap, and more real. To put it simply, JKR makes the Burger King Brand and the food even more crave-able.

The typography, illustrations, color pallet, copy-writing, all of it has a strong cohesive voice that differentiates itself from the competition. What will be interesting to see is if Burger King continues to use any of their past advertising that focused on the King and had at times an almost surreal approach in terms of content. In the past, Burger King has been known for off-the-wall campaigns like Subservient Chicken. This is light-years away from that approach.

For Burger King’s first global rebrand in more than two decades, we set out to make the brand feel less synthetic and artificial, and more real, crave-able, and tasty. We were inspired by the brand’s original logo and how it has grown to have an iconic place in culture. The new logo pays homage to the brand’s heritage with a refined design that’s confident, simple, and fun.

JKR Global

W + K Sao Paulo’s New Identity System

Most people think of branding as a logo. And most people think of a logo as visual identity. A logo is one component of your visual identity system which makes up one part of your brand.  A great example of this is Weiden and Kennedy Sao Paulo new visual identity which is shown in the video below. They break down the inspiration for the logo design and then show how it is translated across a series of touch points as part of a larger identity system. No this doesn’t establish their branding. Branding is much larger than just a logo, visual identity system or editorial voice. Branding encompasses everything that establishes a relationship with a product, company, or service. The example in the video is one hell of an awesome logo and identity system though.

Hyundai (Brand Vision) from Trizz Studio

Back in the early 1990’s I attended a lecture on automotive advertising that made a comparison to the way cars are, or were advertised in Japan at the time versus the United States. In Japan, it was less about the car and more about the mood or feeling. Here in America, little has changed. Most car ads talk about how fast you can go, how much you can haul, will this vehicle help you compensate for something missing in your life, etc. It was and still is an interesting comparison as to how different cultures perceive product relationships and branding. For example the video below, not for a Japanese car, but for Korean Hyundai. The video is an abstraction on relating to the automobile Hyundai’s design sensibilities. It is a short film that combines natural senses and emotions with visual abstractions that relate to what the product stands for; confidence, essentials, refinement, sensuality, effortlessness. It conveys all of this without ever showing a single Hyundai car, and not revealing the brand until the very end of the clip.

The video is an abstraction on relating to the automobile Hyundai’s design sensibilities. It is a short film that combines natural senses and emotions with visual abstractions that relate to what the product stands for; confidence, essentials, refinement, sensuality, effortlessness. It conveys all of this without ever showing a single Hyundai car, and not revealing the brand until the very end of the clip.  What a completely different approach to branding, and one that is the polar opposite of the way automotive branding and advertising is handled here in the good old US of A.

Produced by Trizz Studio for Innocean Worlwide and Hyundai, this is a fantastic blend of CG work, live action footage, and sound design. High production value, and the opportunity to create an abstract representation of what the Hyundai brand represents helps to sell this piece. I think it is wonderful, and frankly would like to see more car ads like this, but I know for a fact no agency in America is ever going to pitch this kind of concept to an automotive client, let alone have an automotive client actually buy in, here in America.

WAtch it full screen and turn up the volume.

A New Symbol For The South.

HatI’ve never lived in the South. I have cousins that live there and my brother moved to Alabama a few months back, and that is about as deep as my relationship to the southern United States gets. I know the south has a rich and diverse cultural heritage, and I know that the confederate flag is a symbol of controversy for many living there and not living there. It is a symbol that has long been divisive and polarizing, occasionally popping up in the news when there is a call to ban or abolish it from public use by a state or local government. So I can’t imagine the challenge of designing a new symbol for the south that would be inclusive, embrace the traditions and heritage of the region, and not spark arguments from those that believe the confederate flag is sacred.

Last year PRI and WNYC asked 70k ft to do just that, and they did. Below is the imagery that they created and some of the thinking that went into the redesign. The embedded links go to the South website and to the PRI site where the team discusses in detail the process, the thinking, and the reaction to the new symbol for the southern portion of the United States. It is an interesting read and listen if you have the time. I have mixed feelings about the end results. I like the new symbol better than the tired old confederate flag, but I’m not sure it will resonate with southerners. It’ll be interesting to see if this new symbol takes hold and develops traction in the future.

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Truck

Rosa Parks

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