Santa Clara, the famous Mexican dairy brand, just moved from the farm to the big city with this redesign, and I think the shift didn’t suit her well.
Santa Clara started in 1924 as a door-to-door business delivering milk, then 60 years later the company started selling ice cream, Cheese, dairy products, yogurt, sweets, and coffee; and in 2012 it was bought by The Coca-Cola Company as part of its Del Valle subdivision.
So if this happens when you’re purchased by a multi millionaire company let me tell you that I am not on sale. Seriously what is going on!?!? It is more than obvious that they wanted to make the brand look “modern”, but why?… not really, why?
I normally don’t get in shock with redesigns because I know they are for the best, but this time they just went from a traditional,-experienced-quality look, to a startup-student-project look that needs a redesign right away. I agree that the past logo was not functional enough for the digital platforms because it was all encapsulated in space, but you can always adapt it and deconstruct it to make it work.
So let me explain to you why this is not a great move in a design perspective. Let’s start with what bothers me the most, they replaced a timeless typography with great and unique ligatures-look at the “ra”- that transmitted organic and high-quality products (which is something consumers are looking for nowadays), with a 2014 trend: geometric type with an exaggerated tracking that is not offering anything extra in this redesign.
Then we have the new cow abstraction. I know the last one was very old school and generic, but at least it projected a feeling. The new one lost that, it looks like a pig with a bell of the size of her head, the only thing that I like is the nose, I know right? Crazy.
But if you think it can’t get worst, take a look at the new packaging. The last one, of course, was not something great, it was actually pretty basic without a concept, but it was consistent. Now I can see that they have created a concept, perhaps more than one because I don’t know if they wanted it to look friendly, expensive, gourmet or commercial.
I appreciate that they developed different element for the brand like the complementary script typography that brings back the exclusiveness that they lost with their new logo and the new patterns based on its different flavors. However, these new elements are not coming together as one: the patterns are too friendly with those colors and are covered with a big white shape (the shape of the fruit flavor); the script font is trying to make the product look gourmet with a copper foil but the rest of the design is not fancy nor exclusive; the logo is placed in the middle of the packaging without any purpose, and the adaptation to the different formats it is just not right.
It seems that they started with the design of the milk box and then tried to adapt it to the other sizes and colors but without making the necessary changes in the hierarchy and size, you can notice how the elements begin to get tighter and tighter as the packaging gets smaller. And OMG! that brown box with the big ice cream ball and the logo in white! What happened! That design is not cohesive at all!
The website also got a redesign, very simple and with a responsive design that reflows across displays, Just meh! no comments. What I do wanna comment about is the advertising image on the home page, here they went for a modern “Mexican” hand painted sign style that is based on the concept of… nothing! Again, where is the design cohesiveness?
You know, I think I got it. They tried to go for a modern gourmet style (I am assuming because there is no info about the redesign of their website). So here is my quick recommendation: if they wanted to go for that look the script font and the copper foil and accents are giving me that, so let’s keep that. Now, the patterns are not that bad, what if they keep the patterns without the fill and utilize the lines in a copper color. Then, bring down the description and photo, and with the logo, well… please just change it.
In conclusion, they need to redefine their concept and style guidelines and stick to them, bringing the same look and feel to the packaging, advertising, social media, and website. And even though regular people -non-designers- will not care a lot about the redesign because the products are still good (I love the peach ice cream!), it is time for the company to realize that the design of its identity is as important for its brand as it is the milk for its yogurt. It can even make people think the products taste better than they actually do.
But well.. at least this is my f opinion
A source that had the chance to experience this change told My F Opinion that the redesign was executed by the full-service global creative agency ATTIK. This agency, founded in 1986, has worked with companies such as Coca-Cola, Bacardi, Kraft, SONY, and Yahoo!, but don’t bother to google them since it was purchased in 2007 by Dentsu Aegis and completely absorbed in 2015.
“The truth is that at first they had something very interesting, but it became more and more distorted.”
According to the source, the redesign was executed in 2014 by this agency (Which make sense because it looks so trendy for that year) and had the aim to provide a look & feel of an artisanal, natural, premium brand; especially with the photography style. However, our source says that the internal design department of the company made all the changes that lead to this final design.
“The designs of the “Lechitas” did not have the horrible picture of the ice cream. They had a very vectorial and simple character according to their taste”
I don’t understand why they decided to hire an international agency that doesn’t have an office in Mexico when the brand is 100% Mexican and the values and culture of the brand are from this society. There are many national design studios that would have understood the concept, vision, and target market better than an external studio.