in the news… Tesco ditches its own branding colours

Karen Haller 01
Karen Haller

In the news - Tesco ditches its own branding colours - Tesco brand colours value range

Not something you see every day, a major brand taking the decision to remove their own branding colours from their own products. The Guardian reported Tesco ‘has ditched its blue-and-white striped Value label in favour of a new softer brand’ as a way of trying to ‘relieve consumers of the embarrassment of buying the cheapest products on its shelves’.

If it’s really down to the consumer being embarrassed, why are the other major supermarket’s own home brand ranges doing so well? I think it goes a bit deeper than this.

Tesco was the first UK supermarket to launch a Value range back in 1993. It was easily identifiable using their own branding colours of red, white and blue. Recently Tesco re-launched with the Everyday Value range as says David Wood, Tesco UK Marketing Director to “provide products that taste better, look better and are healthier.” Bringing a 20 year product line up to date has to be a good thing especially if they are of better quality and healthier.

“85% of shoppers place colour as a primary reason for when they buy a particular product.” – Source: KISSmetrics

colour association
So why did Tesco decide to ditch their own well-known, well recognised branding colours? Surely if your brand is well recognised you would want to maintain that brand recognition. This is only a hunch but I think Tesco thought the only way to successfully launch their new Everyday Value range was to distance themselves from the negative association of their current Value range. If consumers saw the same packaging and the same colours, would the range carry the same negative association even though the quality of the product had improved? Given 85% of shoppers place colour as a primary reason when they buy a product its highly likely this could happen.

And if that’s the case, this is not a position any brand (big or small) would want to be finding themselves in. A lost of brand recognition, identity and trust, which means a lost in sales – exactly the position Tesco found themselves in.

In the news - Tesco ditches its own branding colours - Tesco everyday value colours

Tesco Everyday Value range. Are Tesco distancing themselves from the negative association of their current Value range?

The irony seems to be Tesco’s own branding colours are no longer of value to put on their own value range. It may be worth Tesco’s while to review their own brand identity and instilled it throughout the company so their brand colours regain value…

So maybe it’s not the consumer’s embarrassment after all. What do you think? Will it change your perception of their new Everyday Value range?

If you would like to know more about the 7 Most Common Mistakes Business Owners Make with their Branding Colours, download your copy now.

Image: Karen Haller and Retail Gazette
Source: The Guardian and Retail Gazette

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  1. Nicola Holden on May 1, 2012 at 8:29 am

    Very interesting Karen. A new branding for a new message. It will be interesting to follow this story and see if the new branding colours work for Tesco!

    • admin on May 1, 2012 at 9:16 pm

      I’ll be watching too as this will make an interesting case study.

  2. Tamsin Fox-Davies on May 1, 2012 at 10:12 pm

    Hmmm – the new packaging does look more up market (Waitrose-ish) than the old packaging. It will be interesting to see if it creates an increase in sales or not.

    • admin on May 7, 2012 at 4:56 pm

      Funny you should say that as Retail analyst Bryan Roberts said the brand it was similar to both Morrisons’ M Saver brand and Waitrose Essentials.

  3. Tanya Rennick on May 14, 2012 at 8:06 pm

    I think the new packaging looks much better. The old value range looked exactly that, “Old.”

    • admin on May 22, 2012 at 1:59 pm

      That’s interesting as it was their brand logo. It if looks ‘old’ and ‘dated’ are they in need of an complete branding overhaul. I believe they are making some attempt with their store interiors.

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