Consumers buy and use brands so the world has plenty of brands yet some brands stand out from the pack and apart as Icons such as Google, McDonald’s, Coca-Cola and Nike.
These brands have a very distinctive presence – unique design & colours, top of mind recall, impactful communication and have over a period of time migrated across borders and generations. They have come to represent much more than a product or service and are almost embedded in the culture of society. Over a period of time they have become love marks for the consumer.
One such brand is Google founded in 1998. When it started, Google was serving 10,000 search queries every day. Now it services 3.5 billion searches in a day. Google’s mission is to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful. Its vision is to make search engines so powerful that they understand everything in the world.
17 years after it was launched it has pretty much succeeded in doing what it set out to do. Every one of the 3.5 billion queries it receives everyday travels 1,500 miles on average to a data center and back to return the answer to the user. A single Google query uses 1,000 computers in 0.2 seconds to retrieve an answer! Amazing speed!
The Google brand is certainly iconic but in some ways very different from the Iconic brands ones mentioned earlier. Conventional wisdom states that in order to establish a brand in the minds of the consumer it should be consistently presented i.e. always have the same form, design and colours. Thus the distinctive identity it seeks to create begins to get recognized. Google has made a complete departure from this branding principle and in fact frequently changes its Logo appearance.
Often it does this is in order to emotionally connect with consumers in a particular part of the world and to commemorate something important in their lives, example the logo for Mothers day, Teacher’s day, or even Actor Nargis’s birthday as shown below.