I’m not an expert on airplane livery design nor an expert in airline branding for that matter, but I know something is not right when I see it. Generally, I don’t make a post here on Speak Up about one single detail of something that caught my attention, yet this was quite baffling to me. Perhaps this is not as big a deal — or worse, common practice — and I’m just making a big hubbub out of nothing.
Last year Northwest Airlines’ logo was redesigned by TrueBrand. In good rebranding fashion, any wit that the old logo (by Landor) had, instantly disappeared. The surviving element is the abstracted compass pointing to the Northwest accompanied by a, dare I say it, terrible wordmark. But this is really not the intention of this post. A few weeks ago while airport-hopping between Chicago and Mexico I noticed something I had never seen done before.
Now, like I said, I’m no expert… but what the hell just happened to the logo? The compass and arrow have been flipped and are now positioned to the right of the “nwa” wordmark. It’s not viewable in the picture, but the airplane is facing to the right and in this picture we can see that the logo, when placed on the left side of the airplane, is correct.
Not only is the changing of the logo preposterous but it blunderingly changes the whole meaning of the logo as the compass points to the Northeast — no strategy document or research can back this one up. Slap me silly and call me a brand consultant, but this is simply wrong.