I’m used to seeing manufacturers play to current events to capture people’s interest – as they did in Germany during the 2006 World cup (click here to see what the Germans did in the supermarkets). But you don’t often see them completely redesigning the logo to capture the public’s imagination. Not unless they have such a strong brand that consumers will still recognise it.
Mars branding – or to be more accurate, the Mars design – is strong enough to survive a temporary savaging. As I witnessed in June when I saw two packs calling out to the host nations to “go for it”.
I found this “reinbeissen Jungs” pack [rough translation: grit your teeth lads] in Austria. At the same time, the “Hopp” pack was in Switzerland. In Austria, just to make sure, they told people that it this was actually still a Mars bar – but only down the side. In Switzerland they were taking no risks, and reminded you on the front of the pack.
Did they need to help us recognise the brand? No. Not in Europe. It’s unmistakable. In fact it shows Mars could almost write anything on that pack and we’d still know what we were eating – as long as they keep the colours the same.
Of course for brands with high recognition levels like Mars – that have poured millions into their design and advertising over the years – this is a home game. For others without the strong branding, this would be an own goal.