Maybe PepsiCo should stay away from branding makeovers. You think they would have learned their lesson after the Pepsi logo change back in 2008, at a reported cost of over $1 million on design alone – and in the process destroying an iconic image. Alas, the answer appears to be no.

Another of PepsiCo’s classic brands is Quaker Oats. According to the Wall Street Journal, the familiar face and homespun charm of “Larry” the Quaker man is getting a refresh.

[Sidenote: Yes, Larry is the name “insiders” refer to the logo, which I somehow find off kilter. I always took him for a Jebediah or Ebenezer. And no, I don’t know what an oats insider is. Or do I?]

Please take a very close look at the old version and new version of Larry, and I’ll meet you below.

Wow! Now that’s what I call really mixing things up. Instead of making a major change like the Pepsi logo, you do just enough to essentially have the same logo, but still have to pay to change all of your packaging to the tune of millions. Did your rebranding agency fail to mention this when the dreaded return on investment conversation came up?

From this seat, Larry got a half inch taken off his flowing mane, hit the Quaker version of a StairMaster once a week to shave off a few pounds, and in the process grew a little less jolly. Now that’s what I call a great rebrand! Santa – you’re up next!

My favorite part? Hearing the design guru say: The “goal is not to have anyone notice that he is different.”

After all, if no one can tell you’ve done anything, then you really know your job is done. Well done, Quaker and PepsiCo.

At least we now know why PepsiCo is watering down their Tropicana juice – they have to cover all these rebrands!

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