The products created by soft-drink companies rarely change, so how do you keep your brand feeling fresh, relevant and enticing? Redesign the can! Soft drinks have been a part of world culture since the early 20th century, with their iconic logos often dominating the landscape and making a mark on the subconscious of thirsty nations. Travel to cities like New York and you’ll see gigantic Coca-Cola billboards towering overhead, brightly displayed in neon and on jumbo-trons. Travel through countries like India and entire buildings can be haphazardly covered with dozens of individual signs featuring their ubiquitous logos.[see_also]
As iconic as many soft drink logos are to world culture, it’s interesting to note how often those logos have changed through history. The image below tracks the changing American-based can designs of Coca-Cola, Pepsi, 7UP, Dr. Pepper, Orange Crush and Squirt from the mid-century to their current renditions. We see Coca-Cola transition from a chrome edged diamond outlining its logo, to the frequently remixed versions we see today. With Pepsi we see a bottle capped can from 1948 progressing all the way to their infamous “fat man drinking a Pepsi” logo of today.
When did soft-drink-can logo design hit its peak? Were the oldest examples here the most interesting; were the bold and well established designs of the 80s the best; or are we seeing the best in design on todays cans? What do you think?