Always outnumbered. Generally overdresssed.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Lunch, Leon, lions, lezzers

I've always found lunch to be a rather depressing meal.

Just the relentless tedium of deciding what I'm going to post into my horrible mouth, chew up and swallow at the same time every single fucking day makes me want to cut myself. Recently I've take to going to Leon, because it was founded by and is often staffed by lesbians (and like Larry David I'm a friend o' the lesbians) and because it serves exactly the kind of low calorie balsa wood pabulum that hot, semi-anorexic girls eat for lunch. Just going in there makes me feel like a hungry African lion stalking bow-legged gazelles at a dusty savanna watering hole.



Oh yeah, and the branding is great. Take note, brand managers everywhere.

So standard Leon type is this very tasteful Sans Serif:

I think typographers like to call this a 'grotesque', but they only do that to trick you into saying 'but I thought it was quite nice actually'

But then look, here's a cup. And the type, right, is totally different, and what the fuck is that, if not a full point on the end of the logo?

Bagaguagio indeed

And then when you look around the place you notice that they've done things like sew the name into quilts. Look, they haven't even tried to copy the type they use in the regular logo - they've just done their own thing. 

Digging the revival of quiltwork amongst new wave feminists. The bald man is also a nice touch.
So, being relaxed about the branding like this has at least two excellent effects, one direct, one inadvertent:

1) it makes you look relaxed about the branding. Like you've got better things to do, like cooking sweet potato fritatas and keeping hot semi-anorexic girls from growing white fur all over their bodies.

2)  it makes it look like the brand has heritage. People are really good at reading this stuff, and they do it totally intuitively - seeing more than one extant version of the logo makes you believe that it's gone through many iterations, it's a bit like the way they put pictures of kids from the 70s on the walls - it provides an artificial aura of nostalgia, and creates a sense of trustworthiness.

Consumers have been around branding for nearly a hundred years now - or longer if you count things like flags and crucifixes - I think they can handle this kind of thing. Marketing managers like brand guidelines, but it's quite possible that customers don't give that much of a shit.


Adrian said...

I think you should go client side and then employ me to look after your account exclusively.
Everyone would then live happily ever after.

Tom Albrighton said...

Branding, sexual predation, endorsement of anorexia - this post had it all.

Although the treatment of the brand does seem a bit 'anything goes', presumably there would be some things that are off limits. For example, setting the menu in Times accompanied by clipart might be stretching the point too far.

Maybe there is an incredibly abstruse and nebulous brand document that, instead of stipulating fonts and colours, gives guidelines in terms of hipness, retro appeal and (crucially) productive contrast with the decisions taken by others. A document that takes its edge from the lack of reassurance over the legitimacy of your actions.

jojo said...

Who gives a shit about their logo if they serve good food? There, I've said it.