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Wednesday, June 11, 2008

300 Logos: A Google Boondoggle

I was listening to a marketing friend discuss her annoyance with Web companies last week. Her beef: Too many of these companies eschew traditional marketing practices such as branding.

Our talk turned to Google, the eponymous search engine. My argument was simple: you don't need a brand logo when your company's brand is its URL -- and, in this case, a verb as well.

No true, she said. With syndication and mobile services, it's important for people to have easily recognizable icons so they people associate with your company.

Google, apparently, agrees with my friend.

The company has run through 300 iterations of its new icon, the little blue "g" that appears in the URL address bar, on syndication services and on mobile devices. After all that, though, they still are satisfied.

Now they've asked for user submissions.

Normally, I'm a huge believer of Google. They've done many things right. However, this one strikes me as odd.The rules for user submissions are described in such a way that there can be almost no variation on the "g" logo the marketing team already decided upon:

  1. You have to use a small icon
  2. You have to use the name Google or a letter (the icon is about a quarter-size of a pinky fingernail, so you'll likely only get one letter -- which won't be an "o")
  3. You have to use a primary color, but you shouldn't use red or yellow
  4. You can't make it product specific (so "g" might be a good letter)

In other words, make an icon just like the one the marketing team made -- so that everyone feels better.

By Brad at 11:28 AM | Comments (0)

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