JCPenney is one of the largest retail empires in the United States. The company has been known throughout its history for many great innovations, and it is one of the few “department store” formats strong enough to survive to the modern day.
JCPenney is still a household name for a reason. The company has always been very good at marketing itself to the general public. JCPenney is also one of those companies that developed a brand identity very early, and chose to mature it instead of replacing it. The JCPenney logo has always been central to the companies branding, but it hasn’t stayed the same.
We’re going to look at some of the many logos that JCPenney has used over the years. We’ll also consider why those logos changed, and why the latest logos are so effective.
Logo #1: Penneys
This is the first logo that JCPenney ever used. This logo was used long before JCPenney had stores all over the United States. It was also before the store incorporated the JC initials into the name of the store (The JC stands for the owner James Cash Penney).
This logo was created before the modern era of marketing, so it’s no surprise that it doesn’t look special. It does at least look distinctive. With the stylized lettering, and the blue accents, it is unlikely that consumers would confuse JCPenney with a competitor.
However, this original logo lacked the flair necessary to catch attention from the street. When JCPenney started moving its marketing into the modern age, the look became much different. Let’s look at the logo that was introduced in 1971.
Logo #2: The Fair and Square
“Fair and Square” was a logo that JCPenney had been using for years, but in 1971, the company began incorporating that thinking into the official logo. The “square” now surrounds the rest of the logo. The letters are no longer blocky or stylized. Overall the look is much more professional.
Despite the fact that the company abandoned their wackier font, the new logo is much more eye-grabbing. The letters take on a distinctive shape, and the bright red is sure to catch the eyes of anyone who is trying to decide which store to visit.
While this logo was eventually replaced, it actually still appears on many different stores around the US. It will continue to represent the company in many places around the U.S until those stores finish renovations that only began several years ago.
Logo #3: The Modern Look
This is the latest JCPenney logo. The “Fair and Square” style is now incorporated in two places. There is an outer square the same color as the original logo, and an inner square that now houses the initials for the company.
JCPenney was looking for a sleeker and more modern look to attract the attention of younger shoppers, and most will agree that this logo does the trick. It still looks professional, but far less formal. Also, JCPenney is already a household name, so the complete spelling was no longer necessary.