October 15, 2018

The Coffee-Chain Formerly Known as Dunkin’ Donuts

“Dunkin’ Donuts, the self-proclaimed “#1 retailer of donuts in America,” is distancing itself from the delicious, sugary pastry for which it is named. As of January 1, 2019, Dunkin’ Donuts will ditch the name it has used since 1950 and officially rebrand to the shortened “Dunkin’,” the company said on Tuesday.

Why? Dunkin’ Donuts describes this change as one part of its “multi-faceted blueprint for growth,” which also involves revamped stores featuring doughnuts displayed in glass cases (instead of metal baskets behind the cashier), digital ordering kiosks, and tap systems for cold drinks, like you’d see in a bar. Its pink and orange color scheme — a frankly chic power clash — will remain.

For brands and college freshman alike, there’s no easier way to mark an image overhaul than by taking on a new name. Dunkin’ Donuts is one of a few brands, including WW (formerly Weight Watchers) and Joann (formerly Jo-Ann Fabrics), that have recently changed their names into something vaguer. By dissociating from one specific kind of product or area of focus, they can either push a new message or communicate to customers that they sell a wide range of items — all the better to grow and grow, per the demands of capitalism.”

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