Dunkin, formerly known as Dunkin Donuts – is one of the largest donut shop chains in the world. Their assortment included mostly donuts and coffee since 1950. Much of their branding revolved around selling these two products in conjunction with one another, which proved very effective.
What then became Dunkin Donuts was established in 1948 as Open Kettle, a versatile café chain. In 1950, the founders decided to rebrand as a brand of restaurants that only sold coffee and donuts – a great combination for a quick meal. The longtime name ‘Dunkin Donuts’ comes from the concept of dunking donuts into coffee.
The original logo displayed the brand’s name written in the handwritten cursive script styled as paint. The color was usually a mix of brown and red, which was a nod to coffee, most likely.
They actually tried a mascot as the logo in 1956. It was a man made out of donuts, with the brand’s name emblazoned on his torso. He also carried a plateful of donuts. There are too many donuts.
In 1960, they introduced the iconic pink color they used ever since. The made the silhouette of a mug out of it. Then, they took the first word of the name, curved it into an arch and placed it over the top line of the mug. They colored it pink. Simultaneously, they put the second word on the other side in much the same way and made it white.
In 1961, they reused the two arching words from before and colored them pink. By the way, they are supposed to resemble a donut.
In 1970, they took the mug logo from before and put it into a square. The square was them put into the right side of the rectangle, the rest of which was occupied by the words ‘Dunkin Donuts’ in tall, slim letters.
The 1976 logo was again the mug-with-a-donut, but this time they replaced the text hat substituted a donut with a real donut. On the left, it neighbored the brand name again, and they also occasionally wrote the ‘it’s worth the trip’ slogan below the both things.
Then they decided to just stack two words one over the other and give them an inflated, cartoonish look. There’s not even a single sharp corner on them. As for the coloring, they gave the first word an orange shade, after the baked part of the donuts. The other one was given a pink appearance – after the frosting.
In 2002, they remembered that they also sell coffee, and added it as an additional emblem to the left. It’s a round pink rectangle with an orange silhouette of a coffee cup with the smaller brand’s logo written on it exactly as it looks in full.
In 2007, the cup symbol changed to a brown outline with just two letters differently colored letters ‘D’ written in its middle. They also repainted the rectangle behind into a combination of orange and pink, divided diagonally by a cup.
The rebranding followed in 2019. They are now chiefly known as ‘Dunkin’, and that reflected on the logo. They basically just left the top word from the previous designs and colored the apostrophe pink.
The other popular way of styling their logos (and name in general) is abbreviating it to just ‘DNKN’, in pretty much the same style as the big logotype. It’s mostly featured on their cups – especially on the smaller sizes, although it can also be featured on bigger ones vertically.