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The GAP wants a crowd to dig a deeper hole

A quick follow up on my post yesterday on the develops in the past 24 hours on the launch of the GAP’s new logo. It’s clear they since the launch and the near universal negative reaction that they are in way over their heads and it is just getting worse by the minute. I’m sure the GAP PR department hasn’t slept in the two days but their best idea to try to stop the bleeding means is to have another horrible idea. They have now employed the tactic of the truly desperate and directionless brand – the crowd course design submission process.

This new tactic came out when Bill Chandler the VP of corporate communications told Co.Design that “before the launch goes any further, we’re going to see what other ideas are out there.”. This was echoed by the brands Facebook page (that uses the old logo for it’s avatar) where they say “We know this logo created a lot of buzz… but we’d like to see other ideas”. I personally love that they just launched the universally disliked logo disaster since the 2010 London Olympics logo and think they want to spin it into creating “buzz”. If you have some free time to kill scan through the 540 comments on that Facebook post and see if you find one positive comment about the logo re-design or their new crowd sourced solution.

It is clear that this entire design process happened in a vacuum.  They tried to solve a problem that wasn’t there and created a solution no one wanted because it was the easy answer. They didn’t have to make any hard decisions about their business or their products.  They then made it worse by trying to wrap the massive negative reaction in the even worse idea of trying to crowd source the re-design. I have always felt that crowd sourcing design is the bastion of the clueless brand leader. You waive the white flag that you have no idea where your brand should go, what it should stand for and you throw any last shreds of brand leadership out the window. We can all see they are completely lost and we are all left shaking our heads that such a classic American brand is suffering such a horrible disfigurement.

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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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