People would rather avoid accidents if they can help it. It’s the natural fear of getting hurt by the unexpected. And yet, it’s this same fear that has driven the demand for convenience and motivated innovation.
Ironically, did you know that a lot of our technological breakthroughs were completely made or discovered by accident? From the wonder that was penicillin to kid friendly Play-Doh and the revolutionary microwave. It sure says a lot when you realize how much of mankind continues to strive on things born out of these accidents.
Following this, you will find that similar stories surround brands. These stories of accidental marketing success constantly serve as a lesson to marketers who cling too hard to the status quo.
First off, you have Google. Their name started off Googol, an inside joke for engineers that boasted the amount of information the search engine could gather. The single misspelling on an investor’s check made company (and perhaps world) history by changing it to the name everyone knows today. Even the recent incarnation of their logo was another accident. The logo was only intended for corporate use and was to support android browsers like Chrome.
Another giant we know off is Apple, the company founded by entrepreneurial legend Steve Jobs. The story goes that the company’s name was 3 months late after it had just took off. He then told off his employees on the last day that if they couldn’t come up with a name by 3 o’clock, he’d name the company after his favorite fruit.
These two are just among the many iconic companies that represent the 21st century. They weren’t created to solve a problem, there was no marketing think tank that took days perfecting their ideas, and some might have even faced rejection by today’s standards. Their fame was truly an utter fluke that just so happened to ride the wave of major multi-million dollar products in the process.
While this doesn’t mean that you should let luck rule your marketing strategy from now on, you can worry too much about getting a distinct brand to the point that your energy (and money) gets flushed. Other companies only just had to rebrand themselves like Play-Doh or winged it just like Apple. The key is to keep an open mind and think out of the box often. A brand logo represents everything but sometimes you have to let it instead it letting you.