Design Development and Rationale

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Aim to dissolve the negative connotations regarding the PEP brand because of their affordable prices. PEP makes their market, which is lower and middle class people feel lower and middle class instead of making their customers be brand proud. Make PEP a more “African” brand , seeing that it has been around since the 1950s, and has evolved with Africa. The aim is to showcase through design that Pep has a strong foundation in the retail market . Through using the most stable geometric shape, which is the triangle I strive to represent Pep visually as a strong brand, and also illustrating that the only direction Pep has to go, which is up.


  • Rebrand the PEP image so that the lower and middle class can feel upper-class. And that it is also more true to Africa, seeing that it is Africa’s biggest retailer.
  • Show through the branding methods that Pep is already a reliable and stable brand, and that they can attract more customers than they already have.
  • Rebrand to extend customer base, as well as to make existing customers proud the be part of the whole PEP experience.
  • Rebrand to make customers not only feel good towards the brand but also to ensure that they live with dignity and pride, which according to PEPs mission statement “PEP’s customers are remarkable people who, on a very small budget, make it possible for their families to live with dignity and pride” strive to do.
  • Communicate in a universal manner so that there is as little possible of a language barrier as to their sections and flow in store ( Home, Clothing, Cellular etc)
  • Illustrate the ongoing adaptability and transformation which is necessary to showcase a strong brand.


Market Segmentation

  • Place- PEP is thebiggestsingle brand retailer in Africa.
  • Age- applicable for all ages. Aged 13 and up.
  • Gender- Male and Female
  • Income Class- Lower to middle class

Character Description

  • clothing and footwear, PEP sells homeware, FMCG(Fast-moving consumer goods), cellular and airtime products
  • PEP is thebiggestsingle brand retailer in Africa
  • PEP aims to help its customers to look and feel good
  • PEP operates a lay-bye system to help customers plan their purchases
  • PEP’s customers are remarkable people who, on a very small budget, make it possible for their families to live with dignity and pride
  • PEP owns a clothing factory in Cape Town that manufactures most of its school wear.

Teenagers: Young people don’t feel good when they have to wear PEP clothing. At a certain age kids become brand conscious, thus wearing affordable clothing because it suits their parent’s pockets becomes a problem for them because they feel they have a certain “image” to maintain.

Kids: Parents buy their younger children more affordable clothing because children are still growing, thus buying expensive clothing for their children seems irrelevant because they will outgrow it in a matter of a few months.

Adults: Adults buy PEP products because of its affordability, not because of the brand. Through making PEP a more up-to-date and unique brand people would talk and share their experience, thus making them brand proud.


  • Rebrand PEP retail store with applicable design elements
  • Communicate in a universal manner so that there is as little possible of a language barrier, and bind Africans in the best shopping experience on a budget
  • Shop interior space and flow
  • Shop accessories display stands
  • Create a video to promote the new brand that conveys who PEP is and what they do
  • Create a TV advert to promote specials with regards to the new look and feel of the brand.
  • Updated website
  • Brand roll out


The idea for the rebrand look and feel is to ride on the idea that PEP is the biggest retailer in Africa. The main design element will be the triangle. The triangle will serve to give more substance to the brand, through in some form and manner showing that the triangle can be used to construct different shapes my main goal is to illustrate that the Pep brand is growing, transforming and expanding. In the rebranding process I will also try and incorporate appropriate imagery to improve the way finding in the store. The overall aim is to ensure that people enjoy the shopping experience.

5.1) Pep

Let’s have a look at a well-known brand before we discuss the rebranding processes according to Dr. John Kotter and David Aaker. Pep is South Africa's best known chain of retail stores. They offer a variety of durable family clothing, footwear, household goods and cellular products to Africans from all walks of life with a particular focus on the very poor. The company employs 9000 people, and had a turnover of R2.2 billion and an operating profit of R118 million in the fiscal year ending June 2000. The brand that started in early 1950 created a new store experience for today’s modern South Africa. The store was the first white run establishment to cater to the black culture, it allowed black customers to see and touch products before they purchased them. He also created dressing rooms that would be used by both black and white cultures. Thus Pep is a leading brand in change, and is a very important brand in the South African culture, that bridged diversity way before the apartheid era ended.

The name Pep is used because it is easy to remember and it is easily pronounced and read in all South African languages. Pep means vigour, zest and energy. After Africa’s first democratic election in 1994 Pep had already dominated the cheap retail brand, and they had already catered to all cultures in South Africa. But Pep had become complacent in its middle age and was unprepared for all the changes that came with the democracy. Pep’s target audience was lost, they were no longer interested in cheap retail clothing, instead now they focused on trendy bars, credit cards, home loans etc. Thus Pep had to start doing some serious brand management.

In 1998 Andre Labuschaigne was the new managing director of Pep. According to Labuschaigne "If you tell your people where to go, but not how to get there, you will be amazed at the results,” He was appointed to make the changes necessary with regards to the Pep brand and also to demoralized staff who had watched the company decline for half a decade.

So how did they manage to get Pep back in the market and prevent the downwards spiral that pep was heading towards really fast?

Not through undergoing a rebrand but rather through:

  • Motivating the staff through numerous communication media: face to face meetings, workshops, email, videos, conferences, monthly information sessions, newsletters and regional and national conventions.
  • Sikhula Kun Ye (we are growing together) it the motto he used that would permeate every aspect of Pep culture.
  • The staff was encouraged to greet each other with a customary "high five."
  • New uniforms were issued.
  • Pep also embarked on a retraining program and staff members who made a difference in sales and morale were called Dynamos.

Labuschaigne said: "By involving all our people in formulating our vision, mission and value system, we got a lot of people on board and they helped to create the change. All future programs stem from Sikhula Kun Ye." He says that the key to brand management is to "identify strengths and true values, involve people, shape a dream for them and relentlessly stick to this dream by doing everything, every day to achieve just that."

A few important aspects the Pep brand rides on is that they are strong a contributor to black empowerment, they sell reasonability priced clothing, they are Africa’s biggest retailer, and that they have breached a gap in the market before it was even identified.

5.2) Consumer Behaviour

It is important to have a look at consumer behaviour when considering a rebrand. There are a lot of facets when it comes to the term consumer behaviour, but we are going to focus on the more relatable categories that have connection to not only rebranding but with the two brands, Cell C and Lion Lager, we are discussing.

5.2.1) Self and the self-image

Consumers have a variety of enduring images of themselves. These images or perceptions of self are very closely associated with personality in that individuals tend to associate themselves with a brand whose images or brand personality relates in some meaningful way to their own self-image. In essence, consumers seek to depict themselves in their brand choices; they tend to approach brands with imagery that can enhance their self-concept and avoid those that do not. (Consumer Behaviour; Leon G. Schiffman, Leslie Lazar Kanuk, pg. 172)

Thus with regards to the rebranding of Cell C and Lion Lager, they had to ask themselves not only what the brands image currently is and what they want the brand image to be, but what they want the consumers to experience when making use of their products and service, and what type of people they want to attract. This then links up to your first initial steps of branding with your companies market segmentation. (Consumer Behaviour; Leon G. Schiffman, Leslie Lazar Kanuk, pg. 172)

5.2.2) Perceptual distortion

Individuals are subject to a number of influences that tend to distort their perceptions.

  • Physical appearance: People tend to attribute the qualities they associate with certain people to other who may resemble them, whether or not they consciously recognize the similarity. For this reason, the selection of models for print advertisements and for television commercials can be a key element in their ultimate persuasiveness. (Consumer Behaviour; Leon G. Schiffman, Leslie Lazar Kanuk, pg. 173)
  • Stereotypes: Individuals tend to carry pictures in their minds of the meaning of various stimuli. These stereotypes serves as expectations of what specific situations, people or events will be like, and they are important determinants of how such stimuli are subsequently perceived. (Consumer Behaviour; Leon G. Schiffman, Leslie Lazar Kanuk, pg. 173)
  • First impressions: First impressions tend to be lasting; yet in forming such impressions the perceiver does not yet know which stimuli are relevant, important, or predictive of later behaviour. (Consumer Behaviour; Leon G. Schiffman, Leslie Lazar Kanuk, pg. 173)
  • Jumping to conclusions: Many people tend to jump to conclusions before examining all the relevant evidence. The consumer may hear just the beginning of a commercial message and draw conclusions regarding the product or services a certain brand provides. (Consumer Behaviour; Leon G. Schiffman, Leslie Lazar Kanuk, pg. 173)
  • Halo effect: Historically the halo effect has been used to describe situations in which the evaluation of a single object or person on a multitude of dimensions is based on the evaluation of just one or a few dimensions. Consumer behaviourists broaden the notion of the halo effect to include the evaluation of multiple objects on the basis of evaluation of just one dimension. (Consumer Behaviour; Leon G. Schiffman, Leslie Lazar Kanuk, pg. 173)

5.2.3) How consumers handle risk

Consumers characteristically develop their own strategies for reducing perceived risk. These risk-reduction strategies enable them to act with increased confidence when making product decisions, even though the consequences of such decisions remain somewhat uncertain. Some of the more common risk-reduction strategies are discussed in the following sections. (Consumer Behaviour; Leon G. Schiffman, Leslie Lazar Kanuk, pg. 174) Consumers seek information: Consumers seek information about the product and product category through word of mouth communication, from salespersons, and from the general media. They spend more time thinking about their choices and search for more information about the product alternatives when they associate a high degree of risk with the purchase. This strategy is straightforward and logical because the more information the consumer has about the product and the product category the more predictable the probable consequences and thus, the lower the perceived risk. (Consumer Behaviour; Leon G. Schiffman, Leslie Lazar Kanuk, pg. 174) Consumers are brand loyal: Consumers avoid risk by remaining loyal to a brand with which they have been satisfied instead of purchasing new of untried brands. High-risk perceivers, for example, are more likely to be loyal to their old brands and less likely to purchase newly introduced products. (Consumer Behaviour; Leon G. Schiffman, Leslie Lazar Kanuk, pg. 174) Consumers select by brand image: When consumers have had no experience with a product, they7 tend to trust a favoured or well-known brand name. Consumers often think well-known brands are better and are worth buying for the implied assurance of quality, dependability, performance, and service. (Consumer Behaviour; Leon G. Schiffman, Leslie Lazar Kanuk, pg. 174) Consumers rely on store image: If consumers have no other information about a product, they often trust the judgement of the merchandise buyers of a reputable store and depend on them to have made careful decisions in selecting products for resale. Store image also imparts the implication of products testing and the assurance of service, return privileges, and adjustments in case of in case of dissatisfaction. (Consumer Behaviour; Leon G. Schiffman, Leslie Lazar Kanuk, pg. 175) Consumers buy the most expensive model: When in doubt, consumers often feel that the most expensive model is probably the best in terms of quality that is they equate price with quality. (Consumer Behaviour; Leon G. Schiffman, Leslie Lazar Kanuk, pg. 175) Consumers seek reassurance: Consumers who are uncertain about the wisdom of a product choice seek reassurance through money-back guarantees, government and private laboratory test results, warranties and pre-purchased trails. (Consumer Behaviour; Leon G. Schiffman, Leslie Lazar Kanuk, pg. 175)


After studying David Aaker’s Brand equity model, as well as Dr John Kotters 8-Step Process for Leading Change it is clear why the brands discussed succeeded and failed.

6.1) Cell C.

Throughout the rebranding process they kept their vision insight, which is a very important component of not only any rebranding effort but also the brand identity in general. This can be gathered through Dr John Kotters 8-Step Process for Leading Change Developing a change vision as mentioned earlier More than often the vision is part of the bigger picture which includes strategies, plans and budgets, thus a vision in a rebranding process is quintessentially important. A good vision can demand sacrifices in order to create a better future for all of the enterprise’s stakeholders. The brand/re brand vision must be seen as strategically feasible. To be effective, a vision must take into account the current realities of the enterprise, but also set forth goals that are truly ambitious. A vision must provide real guidance. It must be focused, flexible and easy to communicate. It must both inspire action and guide that action.

If you have a look at the customer analysis it is prominent that when Cell C underwent a rebrand their vision and mission most changed for the company. The new corporate identity, according to Cell C CEO, Lars P Reichelt, reflects the company’s vision of understanding its customers’ way of life and tailoring solutions around them to enhance lifestyles and improve livelihoods.

They also took into consideration the current clients, and aimed not to make them feel excluded. This is because they complied with David Aaker’s brand equity model which is the brand loyalty facet of the model; The degree to which people are devoted to the brand is expressed in the resulting factors. Reichelt said to ensure that the changes are in line with what customers want, Cell C partnered with comedian, Trevor Noah, to be 'the company’s eyes and ears'

Even though ± 50% of the public (according to the survey conducted) still remember the old Cell C branding, they still favour the new branding and they still feel strong affection towards the brand. This all is because of the brand roll out and how they approached the whole process, thus making the Cell C rebranding efforts a good example of successful branding.

6.2) Lion Lager

Today, if you try and conduct research on the rebrand of the product line extension which is Lion Lager, your results are very limited. You’ll be lucky if you are able to Find 2 pictures of the re brand applied to the bottles online. Where to find example of the old branding is much easier. This is clearly the result of the horrible failure they had with their rebranding effort, and they would rather people just forget about their efforts. So why were they unsuccessful? They attempted to change the colours of the brand that is more than 114 years old, thus making the brand distant and unrecognizable to already loyal customers. They did this to appeal to a younger market

They clearly lost their vision of the brand, there by disconnecting die hard Lion Larger fans, and yet still not appealing to the younger market. They lost track of the brand identity. They did not consider the brand promise, the planning, the execution, the brand aesthetics or the customer loyalty. They just did not succeed in any possible way, thus making Lion Lager the perfect example of what not to do when considering a rebrand.