If you have young kids like me, then you probably have been forced to watch a lot of crappy kids shows. I’m so glad my boys finally grew out of Yo Gabba Gabba!
Lately I’ve watched a few episodes of their latest favorite show, iCarly. It’s a show about a teenage girl and her friends doing a web show. I’m not going to get into it too much, you can read all about it on Wiki. Carly and her friends’ laptops are Macbooks. Instead of the Apple logo, it’s a pear. This is done for obvious commercial reasons. What I find interesting is that the very first time I ever saw the scene where their laptops appeared I immediately knew it was a Mac and I was pretty far away from the TV too. It wasn’t the casing or the color of the laptop, it was the lit up pear that gave it away. I’ve seen fake Apple like product replacement in other shows too.
This begs the question: what is a brand without its logo?
When most people think of branding, they think of the logo right away. In fact, many branding related articles floating around these days are simply logo tutorials. Although visual identity is important, but it’s not everything. A brand is not just what it looks like, but also how it feels. The feeling part involves years of consistently good customer service and quality products. That association of quality people develop with the brand is ultimately what defines the brand.
When people recognize your brand from a tiny altered logo from far away, then you know you have a good brand. Not because of the logo, but because of the association people want to make with your product.
Update: Found this article just now, nice read. Interview: The Man Who Named the iMac and Wrote Think Different