What’s the Verdict: Is MasterCard’s New Logo Priceless?
As a large corporation, rolling out a new logo is nothing short of a big risk. But the alternative of being outdated isn’t exactly the way to go either.
It’s a hard balance, but we’ve seen many major corporations take the plunge in recent months.
MasterCard Made a Move
A recent refresh of a classic logo came from MasterCard, who unveiled their new design last week.
While the shapes and colors are reflective of the iconic logo that MasterCard hadn’t changed since 1996, the logo is a major shift in design.
Rolling out change in a major corporation can be unsettling for customers – especially when it comes to the finance industry. Wired reminds us that consistent branding is a key way for banks and credit card companies to build trust with customers. And customers had certainly come to recognize MasterCard’s logo and look.
However, with banking going increasingly digital, the old version of the logo was simultaneously starting to date itself. Cindy Chastain, head of MasterCard’s customer experience and design, explained that the design needed to be adapted to thrive in the digital space.
The new logo is just that: the recognizable features that we all associate with MasterCard, in a simple and sleek new design that looks like it belongs in an app as well as on a printed page.
The team here at Verdin was feeling the positive vibes. But just to get an expert’s viewpoint, we asked our art director Megan Condict for her opinion on this one.
“The decision makers at MasterCard were smart enough to feature what has worked for their company over their desire to create their own mark in the logo’s history,” she said. “This logo is fresh and modern and fits perfectly in with the company’s history. This is truly responsible design.”
The verdict is in. Verdin gives MasterCard a stamp of approval.
But They Weren’t Alone
Bold move, yes… but MasterCard wasn’t the only large corporation to make this kind of decision in the past year.
Staying on trend while maintaining consistent brand identity is a fine line. In recent months, some companies have performed this balance beam routine with a solid landing. Some not so much.
Let’s have a look.
Google: September 2015
“I love this logo evolution. It now feels like it belongs in the modern day. It has carried the colors and quirkiness of the logo into the digital age.”
IHOP: June 2015
“This also feels like it belongs in today’s world. The old logo had a droopy and almost sad look to it, while happiness and expectation of experience is built into the refreshed version.”
Verizon: September 2015
“The old logo felt like too much, so I was happy to see a refresh. I’m not completely sold on the new one either, though. The red check mark still feels extraneous.”
Best Western: September 2015
“Much of the warmth and personality of Best Western was lost in this logo transition. The new logo feels cold and sterile to me, and doesn’t reflect the variety and personality of all the Best Western hotels out there. I miss the red and gold.”
US Soccer Federation: February 2016
“Love. The simplicity of the design gets it into your brain faster. You can comprehend it with one glance.”
Positive or negative, we have something to learn from each of these examples – and the myriad of others from those who have gone before us.
What are your favorite and least favorite logo designs? What makes them fabulous or failing? We’d love to hear your thoughts!