Branding design is by definition to help communicate a company's values, history, services, expectations, etc to it's consumer audience. I believe if you have a brand that is strong and have loyal customers, well, when you develop brand changes you do so as to not confuse your consumers.
The good folks at Seattle's Best Coffee, which is owned by Starbucks, I believe took a "new" look too far. Seattle's Best Coffee had a friendly feel with its past logo (bottom), the new (top), goes to the world of "generic design" that no longer communicates a vision of good coffee. Looking at the new logo the other day, I was not sure what it was for, was that a blood drop, a water drop, a toilet? Don't get me wrong, I love clean design, heck my logo is very simple, but I am not selling coffee and my logo is not known like this Seattle's Best Coffee. The new mark becomes one of the hundreds now, not one of a few that it was prior. If the goal was to differentiate Seattle's Best Coffee from Starbucks and allow it to be sold in Burger King and compete with McDonalds, well that was successful. It was successful at becoming more of the same in the world of quick coffee. The logo works if I am looking forward to a kid pushing a button on a fancy machine to make me a mocha. I believe the logo does not work for the price point of "designer" coffee but the next time I am seeking out a generic cup of coffee, Seattle's Best will come to the top of my mind.