In its third rebranding exercise in recent years, the WPP agency, bates has dropped ‘141’ from its name, and adopted a new ‘changengage’ philosophy.
The new logo features the bates typeface in contemporary Helvetica and three speech balloons (in original bates pumpkin, red and blue), replacing the former eye mnemonic.
On the change, Dheeraj Sinha, regional planning director, bates, said, "The last decade has been revolutionary in the way the world has changed. People today are facing larger issues like severe economic fluctuations, rising terror threat and overall vulnerability. People across the world are challenging authorities and seeking a stake in the way they are governed. Marketing is thus talking to an audience that isn't just seeking hope through lipstick. Brands in this world need to provoke debates rather than dish out doctrines. They need to be fluid as people's lives are, rather than fixed to their own plans. By understanding the larger shifts in people's lives, our new positioning and thinking readies us to engage this world in new ways, to provoke new conversations with people.”
Sonal Dabral, regional executive creative director and India chairman, bates, added, “It's been an exciting journey for all of us developing the new identity for bates. A few words on the semiotics of the new logo: The cluster of speech blurbs above the name is symbolic of vibrant conversations and debates we will aim to provoke through our work. The overlapping blurbs are also a subliminal reminder of tag clouds, the language of now and the future. Lastly the vibrant colors represent the new bates – the younger, more nimble, exciting and sparkling bates, ready to create path breaking and engaging work for our clients.”
Speaking about the new development, Sandeep Pathak, chief executive officer, bates India, added that the agency will strengthen their planning team to align with their new positioning. Talking about the simultaneous brand change across Asian offices, Pathak informed that the agency used their internal live blogging platform – Bates Talk – for their unveiling where employees across offices witnessed the launch as well as shared their thoughts about the new change.
Pathak also said, “In today’s world brands that have conversations with their audiences are far more coveted than brands that broadcast to them. We have always stood for understanding the tectonic changes that are happening in culture, category and consumer, and translating it into our work. Our new philosophy of being the changengage people best represents a lot of the work, that we have done in the past and desire to do so, for our clients and brands going forward."
The new agency model is based on the troika of management, creative and planning leaders, supported by young and hungry digital natives.