In hindsight...was the Christopher Ward rebrand of 2016 a historic mistake?

Discuss Christopher Ward watches

What should Christopher Ward do with their branding?

Keep it as it is - the rebrand is good
18
44%
Revert back to their old Chr.Ward brand and refresh it
18
44%
Create a 'heritage' and a 'modernist' line of watches
5
12%
 
Total votes: 41

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Re: In hindsight...was the Christopher Ward rebrand of 2016 a historic mistake?

Post by thomcat00 »

Radboud wrote: Mon May 02, 2022 2:36 am The historic mistake is using Christopher Ward for the brand name..
While you’re entitled to your opinion, I very much disagree. To me, I have not a problem with letter length, syllable count and accent, nor even the left justified layout on the dial. The typeface isn’t great but nor is it horrible; it lacks a “pop” to my eyes. What are your objections?
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Re: In hindsight...was the Christopher Ward rebrand of 2016 a historic mistake?

Post by nbg »

Was the 2016 rebrand a mistake. Nope I don’t think so, even though I personally preferred the first two versions of the logo.

It is completely irrelevant that I didn’t like the word mark at 9 watches. Many did.

I believe that the logo was changed at the time, together with a revamped website and greater social media and marketing visibility for a very simple reason. A judgement from the owners of the business that it was required to try and achieve an acceptable return on the capital that they had at risk and that to do nothing was not really an option.

Like all logo changes the 2016 generated significant discussion. I recall posting this at the time:
nbg wrote: Sun Jun 12, 2016 8:35 pm
downer wrote:Is it not completely normal for a company to seek growth through the development of additional markets, and in a strategic review isn't it completely normal to analyse and remove any potential barriers to that growth - in this case, the Chr logo that may not be readily understood in non-English speaking countries?
Agreed, although I liked the last logo/brand (as I did the 1st one). In my view the new logo seems to be trying to be different just for the sake of it.

Will it appeal to the Chinese market? seems doubtful if you consider that the Chinese seem to go for established European brands.

Bottom line is that entrepreneurs are by nature risk takers and perhaps for Jorg, Mike and Peter as the main shareholders, this is a roll of the dice for better or worse, to try and expand the company to generate an acceptable return to them for the capital invested.

No doubt Chris and JJ, as in my view the key (as far as I understand) non director employees, will be ok regardless of the success or otherwise of the company going forward - Chris as the key person to get CW to this stage and JJ as clearly a talented watchmaker, would I imagine, each have a strong reputation in the industry.

Left hand justified logo? Not for me from any brand, regardless of their position in the market. But does that matter? Not really, as hopefully overall CW will find new customers from the rebrand and go from strength to strength.

As to the chat? Haven't read it yet, as I don't really think it will have any impact on my view.

Neil
As to the move to twin flags at 12 and the company name on the caseback. Fine with me. :)

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Re: In hindsight...was the Christopher Ward rebrand of 2016 a historic mistake?

Post by asqwerth »

thomcat00 wrote: Mon May 02, 2022 8:39 am
Radboud wrote: Mon May 02, 2022 2:36 am The historic mistake is using Christopher Ward for the brand name..
While you’re entitled to your opinion, I very much disagree. To me, I have not a problem with letter length, syllable count and accent, nor even the left justified layout on the dial. The typeface isn’t great but nor is it horrible; it lacks a “pop” to my eyes. What are your objections?
I think the poster's point is that by using the name of one of the founding members as the brand name, it became awkward when he left the company. Do you still want his name on your watches and registered company name, when he's not just left the company but somewhat involved, through his son, with Tribus watches?
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Re: In hindsight...was the Christopher Ward rebrand of 2016 a historic mistake?

Post by scooter »

The original wordmark was by far and away the best and I wish they had kept it but it's too late to go back now. It featured on the only CW watches I have owned having never bought another for myself.

Version 2 wordmark did not appeal to me at all and it went downhill then on.

The twin flags logo on the front at 12 and the brand name on the reverse however is an excellent idea.

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Re: In hindsight...was the Christopher Ward rebrand of 2016 a historic mistake?

Post by Amor Vincit Omnia »

scooter wrote: Mon May 02, 2022 9:21 am Version 2 wordmark did not appeal to me at all…
I remember it well. We found ourselves at opposite ends of the ground on that particular match day. I seem to remember you saying that you would never buy a watch with the V2 on it, and kudos to you for sticking to your guns.
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Re: In hindsight...was the Christopher Ward rebrand of 2016 a historic mistake?

Post by scooter »

The golden age when two friends could agree to disagree and no harm done.

To do so these days and you run the risk of being 'cancelled'.

Don't ask me how I know this.

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Re: In hindsight...was the Christopher Ward rebrand of 2016 a historic mistake?

Post by golfjunky »

Ah this is a tricky one for sure, I really like the logo but on its own on the dial I have to agree with others that it looks kickstarter. I do not understand at all having the name on the back and see it as only a phase to which it is removed altogether. Without a name change they are snookered.
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Re: In hindsight...was the Christopher Ward rebrand of 2016 a historic mistake?

Post by golfjunky »

I think I will come to like the applied/lumed flags but still think the issue of identity will remain.
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Re: In hindsight...was the Christopher Ward rebrand of 2016 a historic mistake?

Post by redmonaco »

jf72 wrote: Sun May 01, 2022 7:57 pm Haha, thank you very much for your warm welcome... ashamed to say the Scandinavian parrot reference has gone over my head!

I'd like to make my thread about the branding in the widest possible terms rather than fixating on the logo... to this day CW are still producing 'vintage inspired' (like the Aquitaine) or 'military inspired' (the Sealander) watches, but the kinds of guys who fetishise about the military are exactly the traditionalists who are into 'faux-luxury' as I think Mike France put it, which to me feels out of step with the modernist branding, which seems aimed very much at the younger market who have very different interests!

I would love to see some limited editions with the old logo... I even think the trident logo of the MKII counterbalance could work as well as the Rolex Crown, Tudor Shield or Omega Ω

I agree, that was a lost opportunity.
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Re: In hindsight...was the Christopher Ward rebrand of 2016 a historic mistake?

Post by redmonaco »

Also I think the Wordmark is on the way out because those that remain don't want Mr Wards name on their products!!
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Re: In hindsight...was the Christopher Ward rebrand of 2016 a historic mistake?

Post by Amor Vincit Omnia »

redmonaco wrote: Mon May 02, 2022 11:35 am
jf72 wrote: Sun May 01, 2022 7:57 pm I would love to see some limited editions with the old logo... I even think the trident logo of the MKII counterbalance could work as well as the Rolex Crown, Tudor Shield or Omega Ω

I agree, that was a lost opportunity.
The Trident emblem only refers to certain ranges within the dive/sport collection, not to the brand as a whole. But there’s no reason why I couldn’t, I suppose.
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Re: In hindsight...was the Christopher Ward rebrand of 2016 a historic mistake?

Post by JAFO »

No, I never minded the 9 o'clock placement. I imagine the departure of Mr C W has led to the removal.of the word brand.

On a different point, if the C65 is now the Aquitaine, why still have a trident on the second hand?
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Re: In hindsight...was the Christopher Ward rebrand of 2016 a historic mistake?

Post by Amor Vincit Omnia »

JAFO wrote: Mon May 02, 2022 2:25 pm On a different point, if the C65 is now the Aquitaine, why still have a trident on the second hand?
I would imagine, for the same reason that the C63 Sealander has it. Even though the name Trident isn’t used it’s part of the design language of the C6xx family. Possibly.
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Re: In hindsight...was the Christopher Ward rebrand of 2016 a historic mistake?

Post by exHowfener »

Do you still want his name on your watches and registered company name, when he's not just left the company but somewhat involved, through his son, with Tribus watches?
I may be cynical but I think Mr CW is rather more than "somewhat involved". That aside, there are any number of companies where the founders name remains after their departure. It seems to me that there may have been some kind of 'gentleman's agreement' about the removal of the name, after a decent interval. Whether the company eventually changes name is another matter. We'll just have to wait and see.
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Re: In hindsight...was the Christopher Ward rebrand of 2016 a historic mistake?

Post by Thunder1 »

Hard to believe something as relatively insignificant as the 'logo name/placement' has continued to persist as a determining factor of 'if and when' one would buy a watch...incredible..talk about 1st world problems!!.. :problem:
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