Imagine swapping faces with your worst enemy. That’s what kitchen appliance company CDA has done to some of the world’s biggest companies, by remixing their logos. CDA took key attributes from one company’s identity and swapped them with that of their rivals.
Cadbury chocolate’s iconic white script gets set against Hershey’s stark rectangular brown background. McDonald’s is squished in between two stylized hamburger buns, and Burger King is now within the famous golden arches. In another twist, Baskin Robbins’s highly identifiable blue and pink typeface is given to Dairy Queen, and Tim Horton’s is placed around the legendary Starbucks siren.
After decades of being inundated with iconic brand identities, you’d think we’d be too familiar with them to be fooled. But when these logos’ typefaces, color palettes, and illustrations get mixed together, they look oddly familiar. The result is a challenge for consumers in brand recognition and how our brains adjust to deceiving aesthetics.
Logos with very clear illustrations, like Domino’s Pizza’s domino and Pizza Hut’s red roof, are easier to make sense of when the company’s name is swapped. But seeing “Krispy Kreme” in Dunkin’ Donuts characteristic bubble letters takes a little longer for the brain to make sense of, because a simple change in color scheme doesn’t override our sense that something is off.
Other mashups between Pepsi and Coca-Cola, Chick-fil-A and KFC, and Subway and Jimmy John’s, all provide similarly unsettling, yet convincing, results. Since these rival companies focus on the same basic products, it ultimately isn’t too hard to suspend disbelief and imagine them as each other.