11 thoughts on “Season of makeovers

  1. Dear Kanupriya,

    Few clarifications on the CEAT logo Change:

    The Genesis of the Logo: The Old logo and tagline “Born Tough” worked wonders for CEAT in an era where the chief requirement from a tyre was “Overloading”, be it the 6 wheeled trucks that you saw lumbering on the highway or be it the family car that used to carry the entire joint family.

    However times have changed, the transportation game has changed… The 6 wheeler trucks are being replaced by high speed container trucks. Nuclear families and vehicle seating norms have ensured that your car is not really overloaded as in the past. Hence over a period of time the primary requirement from a tyre has changed from just “load carrying capacity” to mileage, Cushioning(read comfort),Speed(Speed rated Radials)and parameters like Cost per Km(Truck Owners are actually becoming that scientific)…

    Extensive research with our consumers pointed out towards the fact that while CEAT, the Rhino and Born Tough were still SALIENT, their relevance was a question mark???.. Catering to a young India where 55% of the population is under 25, is no joke.. You need to youthful, fast, aggressive and that is precisely what the new logo is all about.

    Also, a logo does not stand for a consumer brand alone. Today it visually depicts the aspirations of the entire set of stakeholders attached to the company,be it employees, future employees, investors, trade partners etc…

    CEAT as a company has overcome a period of despondency and now wants to occupy a premium position in all the stakeholders’ mindset. There have been lot of initiatives that have been taken within the company(operational, cultural, product-wise etc),to make it a far more youthful, aggressive and contemporary company. Some changes have already happened and some will be experienced by the stakeholders in the days to come. All in all the company is in a state where it is ready to “Take it on”

    The New Logo is a visual manifestation of this Corporate philosphy.

    Ceat’s new logo is youthful and mature – building on the rich heritage of the company. The three orange lines are symbolic of speed and dynamism and are based on the idea of ‘raising the bar’. The capital letters make the mark look mature and distinguished. The visual language is derived from the elements of the road, whilst the rich blue sets the brand apart.

    Before signing off, want to tell you that I truly appreciate your feedback as a consumer and marketing professional… So Kindly answer the following 2 questions:

    1) When was the last time you went to a tyre shop to get your tyres changed???

    2)Which creative agency are you working for?

  2. Hi Nitin,
    Since you’ve not left your URL over here, hence replying to your comment in my blog itself.
    First thing first, I’m not working in any creative agency. I have always worked in client’s side and have worked as brand / marketing professional in industries like – consumer durable / information technology / entertainment. Currently I am heading the product in a web 2.0 entertainment start-up. And since I’m not in any agency, hence the feedback in my blog is not given because of any personal interest towards rebuking anybody’s work. Its my personal opinion as a consumer as well as a marketing professional.
    I’m assuming that you’re either CEAT’s marketing / brand manager or somebody from their agency. while I agree that the font of the logo is new & OK (same has been mentioned in my blog post) and visually those three orange lines in E gave me the feeling of some road kind of thing but somehow my personal opinion is that rhino and born tough were very symbolic to CEAT’s brand identity. I think all of us have grown-up seeeing that logo and to most of us just that rhino reminds immediately of CEAT brand. Even if vehicle sizes are getting reduced and tyres are getting sleeker but as a consumer I think tyres are something which one will always prefer to be TOUGH. As a marketer I also understand the importance of changing with times and consumer preferences but somehow the change needs to be positive and better than the previous one and in my personal opinion I liked your earlier logo to be better than the new one. But well, to each his own 🙂 and its impossible that everyone can think alike.
    Thanks for your comment on my blog and wish you good luck in this new branding task.
    Lastly, touchwood my car has not given me any trouble off late and hence I have not visited any tyre shop recently 🙂

  3. @kanupriya.

    You nailed it. Com’on Tell me, what were Ceat trying to achieve with this face lift. The new logo DOESNT convey youthfulness, cheerful or bright hip-hopiness! You know what I see, overcrowded “A & T” and “C” separated from a “AT” with some kinda barrier.

    @nitin

    You have every right to defend your work/company. But I tell you, I thought it was a joke when I saw this first time. The Logo (sample provided in the blog post) CANNOT be engraved onto an actual tyre. It definitly looks like a jiffy mockup of an original, but I tend to convince myself you/your designer actually made this design and you went with it. Funny !

    Godrej >
    Wonderful ! They just put vibrant colors and didnt do (any serious) with the original design. That’s partly because of the rigid management (as I understand from the post). The AD campaign is also very nicely put.

    Shopper’s Stop >
    Yeah, I always thought the original one to be unique though it lacked that final bit of ‘balanceness’ or ‘proportion’. It was always clumsy on a carry bag :). The new one can be easily mistaken for a Shirt/Suit brand, but its good.

  4. Everytime some changes happen to traditional things, not all ppl can understand at one shot.It will take some time and thatz what is happening. Cheers to all of them!!

  5. @ Kanupriya

    You mentioned in ur blog that you have worked in Godrejs marketing team. Can you help me out in answering the following questions, am working on a project about rebranding exercise done by Godrej.
    What does red signifies in the old logo?
    why dint they changed the font?
    i would be thankful if you reply to this through your personal mail so that i can have a reference to give for my answers…
    Thank you

  6. CEAT and Godrej are very old brand and legends in their own territory, and also considered as pioners & leaders.

    To change something which has been there for all these years, it has to something more interesting and reflecting the new image. Godrej has done good by keeping the basic design same, but changing only the colors. Similarly, CEAT should have kept the same basic design and played around it without relinquishing the old image. When you are tough, show it to the world, BOLDLY.

    http://q8life.wordpress.com

  7. I’m graphic designer by profession. And frankly, I think with all the research these companies go for paying crores is all going down the drain if their branding agency can not translate that research into aesthetics. Nitin elaborates the deep research that went into the Ceat re-branding, which to me ULTIMATELY boils down to zilch because they ruined the visual metaphor of a age-old company which many of us grew up looking at.

    The strength and solidity of the old Ceat red logo + the Rhino were reduced to this yuppy looking logo where the designer has evidently been a victim of recent trends in graphic design. Representing an ‘E’ with three stripes or removing the horizontal bar of the ‘A’ can be widely seen in brands such as Esprit, and is a very common way to tackle type based logos i.e logos without a symbol or monogram. And the new Ceat logo doesn’t stand out in the horde, anymore.

    Shopper’s Stop tried to go the elite sophisticated look matching high-end designer brands and lost out on its casual next door comfortable shopping arena feel. May be that’s what they wanted. Both Ceat and Shopper’s Stop re-branded by Ray & Keshavan, a Bangalore based branding agency which sold itself to corporate giants WPP (Brand Union) seems to have sold their soul too.

    Godrej, on the other hand not wanting to trust an India firm with the mighty job of their re-branding went to Interbrand; who I’m sure misread the Indian demographics grossly to have come out with that vibrant puke of happy colours. India is colourful sure but it is certainly more multi-faceted than our kitsch ~ which is only thing visible to a foreigner, oh and did I mention snake charmers and elephants! A burst of colour in the Godrej identity makes no sense when in the longer run i.e after you rip apart the colourful packaging and begin using their products all you see is a monochrome logo either embossed or debossed on the surface (in case of a lot of products). But I must give credit to Interbrand for retaining the signature logo of Godrej’s which is widely recognised across our nation.

    An awful lot of research hungry MBA’s in such huge companies have gotten them to such measures. Research which you can’t utilize is useless. Following a fad blindly has made these companies get uglier, the truth is these guys never needed a re-branding! Sometimes the solution is not to have a solution, at all.

  8. I forgot to add, Godrej went to Interbrand after they recently ravaged the classic Xeror logo. What an absolute fiasco that is!

  9. Pingback: Its makeover time for Videocon « Marketing Chit-Chat

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