Best Buy’s Rebranding Nightmare

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Update: It appears that Best Buy is closing 250 of their smaller branded stores, which typically exist in shopping malls. This is important to note because of two reasons:

  1. Best Buy is fully embracing going back in time when shoppers were ill-informed and looked to Best Buy for guidance on electronics (despite the fact that no one goes to Best Buy for guidance anymore, they go google.com or Apple Store temples)
  2. Closing their mobile-targeted stores in malls controls their new narrative. Forcing the more likely, older shopper to venture into their larger stores who have more resources (and merchandise to sell) — which will lead to frustrating customer conclusions: Best Buys are horrible.

Holy shit. This looks terrible. Honestly, I feel bad for Best Buy. They have a business which is being eaten away at by two sides: Amazon and Apple (and brands like Apple that have the capital to open retail locations). I’m honestly surprised Best Buy survived the 2000’s (Blockbuster wasn’t so lucky).

If Best Buy really wanted a re-brand, they should’ve abandoned the color scheme altogether with an iconoclastic rebrand. The blue and white were a bad choice for obvious reasons. And the navy (I guess these are Bud Light Blue polos now?) were a bad idea too — too close to the sacred navy-garb Apple Store employees wear.

Take a look at this nightmarish TV spot. What a ridiculous, outrageous, and just absolutely delicious, cringe-worthy spot. It violates Best Buy’s values, it paints consumers as idiots, and ignores a growing market they should be targeting — millenials and xiennials. What a complete waste of money and creative talent.

From AdAge:

A year after consolidating its marketing department and eliminating the role of chief creative officer, Best Buy is back to bulking up its in-house creative team. In November, the company hired Bruce Bildsten, who spent two decades at agency Fallon, as executive creative director. The brand is in the process of hiring dozens more for the creative team.”We’re proud of the internal team we’re assembling here,” says Alexander.

In a 30-second TV spot “Talk the talk,” Best Buy employees counsel customers. Everything in the video is black and white, save the bright blue shirts of the staffers. A 60-second version will air digitally, while 15-second clips will also debut on TV. Academy Award winner Errol Morris directed the videos.

A whole year? This was a mostly “internal” rebrand effort? What a joke. Just how much external creative input was there from outside agencies? It’s not clear at all. This rebrand could’ve been an investment in millenials minds and wallets, but instead they really screwed the pooch on this one. This rebrand is a failure by all accounts.

Look at how Chobani rebranded. That is what a professional, iterative, healthy design process should produce. Reflective of the brand. Reflective of the future. Reflective of the company.

It’s easy to see that Best Buy’s branding and new spots were designed by committee. They’re chaotic, amateur and insult the consumer. Those TV spots aren’t going to motivate anyone under 55 to go to a Best Buy (or visit bestbuy.com for that matter). Perhaps — maybe it is best that their branding turned out like this. I mean, Best Buy’s financial pitfalls will be designed by committee. Just like Blockbuster.

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