Should Uber do a U-ey on their new logo?

12th February, 2016


Whether you work at a marketing agency, you love creative marketing, or you’ve just hopped in an Uber taxi lately, I’m sure you’ll have seen the new branding. And the tweet above seems to sum up the general reaction pretty sweetly.

Incredibly it’s been two and a half years in the making (yes, TWO AND A HALF!) and has been created, not by a branding agency or a marketing agency, but by Uber’s founder and CEO, Travis Kalanick, and a team of in-house designers, led by Design Director, Shalin Amin.

Now, anyone who has been involved in an in-house rebrand or creating a new integrated marketing strategy for their business, knows the internal politics it attracts. Suddenly everyone has an opinion. Everyone has an agenda. Progress is slower than a motorway roadworks schedule, and the eventual outcome is hardly ever single-minded or effective.

When we rebranded as Leeds’ newest customer engagement agency, Alchemy, we were keen to avoid this pitfall. Being an integrated marketing agency, we had all the skills in-house. So we selected a small team from across the business. We had one clear message of customer engagement. And we only involved decision makers at key points. Within weeks the Alchemy brand was born and, even though it’s a work in progress, I rather like it!


Working in marketing agency land you soon realise that no company invests so much money – and time! – in a global rebrand without having a bigger business or marketing strategy behind it. So I’m speculating that Uber’s curious new logo is them setting out their stall for bigger things.

UberRUSH already exists in San Francisco, New York and Chicago, making fast deliveries for businesses across the cities. In Paris, UberEATS delivers food from top restaurants to your door in under 10 minutes. In Leeds and across the world, Uber is being used by more and more businesses to replace pool cars and company cars.

So before we write off the new logo as ‘very bad and useless’, maybe we should just wait a few months and see what new-look Uber has in store for the world.

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