In case you missed it, Microsoft recently changed their corporate logo. I thought I would wait until the excitement died down before commenting. You can almost always tell a company is in trouble when they change their logo.
Of course it’s easy to jump on the Microsoft bashing bandwagon, and they have been in trouble for quite a while. I’m simply using them as an example. From the other end of the size spectrum, I could use either of my son-in-law’s two businesses. Both are under $1M in sales. Both have recently redone their logos.
Redoing your logo or identity for even a small company will cost you both time and money. In my son-in-law’s businesses, over $5K when you add up signage, website, literature, business cards, ad infinitum. It rarely improves the top line or brings in new business. I have to ask why?
I imagine it’s because one’s ego and business identity get confused. In small entrepreneurial companies, the owner is often “the company.” As a result, his or her ego is also “the company.” Therefore the identity is connected to the owner’s ego. The other reason is that it’s often easier to address something visible like identity than working on tougher problems.
If the focus was on your brand, or your brand promise or brand loyalty it would make more sense. But because it has become easy to create a new identity, because it’s visible, because we believe it reflects on us, we wind up tinkering with the identity. Don’t. It’s a waste of time for 98% of small and medium businesses. We’ll remember you for the brand you develop by working on the hard stuff. When you get to the size of Microsoft then you can tinker.
Success is about relentlessly implementing a great plan, not about the binder the plan is kept in. So when your VP of Sales and Marketing comes to you and says he thinks you need to change the logo… you need to make another decision.
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