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Tropicana Hits Command-Z

tropicana

During this past holiday season I was in the grocery store and looking for some Tropicana orange juice for breakfast the next morning. I stood scanning the wall of cardboard containers at a complete loss as to why I couldn’t find what I was looking for. I then went slowly label by label and realized that Tropicana had re-done their packaging to a horrible new design. The design made the package look like a generic in-store brand. Gone was the iconic orange with the red straw protruding from it and it was replaced with a generic orange gradient. It reminded me a of the equally bad new Pepsi branding which is funny since at the time I forgot that Tropicana is owned by Pepsi.

It seems I was not alone in my reaction to the change because PepsiCo is bowing to the public outcry of letters, e-mail messages and telephone calls and they are scrapping the changes to the Tropicana packaging and the previous version will be brought back in the next month.

I think that the short timeline from launch to the return of the old design was only made possible because of the internet. The consumers ability voice their opinion and provide feedback to the brand in such a quick manner is a new development. It took Coke far longer to figure out how badly they had screwed up with New Coke so at least Pepsi’s version of New Coke got off the market in a hurry.

3 Comments

  1. urbaneskimo

    February 25, 2009 at 7:59 pm

    I hate their packaging. Their headlines are awful to: Squeeze – It’s a natural. Makes no sense.

    I’ve come around to Pepsi. I love their ads. They’re celebratory, jovial, and not pushing anything. And quick. FO SHO and YES YOU CAN. They’re cute, without being obnoxious. They’re logo…I could care less. Its still pepsi and I don’t drink soda because its poison – but I do like them a little bit more, and excited by the lack of visual clutter their ads make.

    aaron

  2. blog

    February 26, 2009 at 9:14 am

    Funny…both Tropicana & Pepsi were redesigned by the same company…Arnell Group. Ugh.

  3. Stephen Gates

    February 26, 2009 at 10:16 am

    A friend of mine sent me this video of the head or the package design firm explaining the logic behind the new look.

    http://adage.com/brightcove/lineup.php?lineup=1266084202

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Creative Director, Designer, Brand Builder, Speaker, Podcaster, Crazy One. As a designer, I have 20+ years experience creating the strategy, concepts, and designs for award-winning integrated global advertising campaigns, building multiple global Fortune 500 brands and creating innovative digital experiences. As a leader, I have 15+ years transforming agency and client-side teams using a mix of creativity, business strategy, process and political skill to create innovative, world-class work and cultures that change industries and companies. My clients have included American Airlines, W Hotels, Disney, Citi, ExxonMobil, Acura, Old Navy, Nationwide Insurance, Verizon, Subaru and many others. My work has received over 150 international awards, my app designs have been named as one of the World’s 100 Greatest Apps, Apple has featured my work in 9 keynotes, 4 TV commercials and more.

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