Setting the right expectations
Yahoo launched its new logo with much fanfare. However, reception to the new logo has been lackluster. There have been a lot of comments on the logo already, and I don’t need to do another post about changing logos. Arguably, the change, good or bad, has injected new energy to the brand.
What I want to talk about is expectations.
Yahoo’s logo may have been better received if it wasn’t accompanied by the 30-day hype. Yahoo released many different versions of the potential new logo. According to public opinions, some of them were probably more interesting than the actually launched logo. In the word of marketing, public opinion is the only opinion that matters. The launched yahoo logo paled in comparison to some of the preview logos. So, what we really have here is a case of elevated expectations.
In marketing, it’s always important to manage public opinions. One of the ways to do so is to manage expectations. If you establish high expectations, you need to deliver against those expectations. Similarly, if Yahoo’s preview logos were less interesting, people wouldn’t have expectations that the new logo would be a big change at all. This applies to logos, to products, to services.
For example, if you establish that a frozen food product would taste like authentic Thai food in Thailand, you better hit the favoring right. If not, you won’t be able to deliver against expectations and fail against the product promise. Alternately, you could establish that product to be convenient Thai food at home – which refocus the promise to convenience and not taste. Which perhaps is the expectation your product is more aligned to deliver against.
One of the worst mistake one can make in marketing or in life is to overpromise and underdeliver.