If you think logos, corporate identity and any other brand logos are truly original these days… think again. There’s plenty company, the world over. Whether doppelgängers, look-alikes, wannabes, copies, or plain plagiarism, similarities abound. Sheer coincidence?
Hey, in the era of internet, anything is possible! An ever changing, ever amassing encyclopedia of visual identity is just a click away. I’ve found them, surely others have too! (I meant all the graphic designers, web developers, and brandologists who may have been inspired by the same visual!)
Chase Bank; Distrilog Group, Belgium; Citizen Bank & Trust, Van Buren, Arkansas; Portugal-based Millenium BCP Bank (formerly Banco Comercial Português); Computer Cafe, Logo Concept; Center National Bank, Minneapolis-based Bank, USA; Oxford Health Plan, part of the United HealthCare Group, USA; Co-op ATM network; Assurex Global, Insurance Brokerage Firm, USA; Central Parking System, USA (and its Mexican subsidiary); Huntington Bank, USA; China Construction Bank; Fonds Cogeco, Montréal, Québec, Canada; Oklahoma Department of Commerce’s Governor’s Council for Workforce and Economic Development, OK, USA; National Center for Research Resources, an organization under NIH (National Institutes of Health), DC, USA; The Netherlands-based Corporate Express (formerly known as Buhrmann), which is now part of US-based Staples Office Supplies Superstore Chain; GateWay Community College, Phoenix, AZ, USA; Leitbetriebe Austria; Asuransi Rama (Rama Insurance Co.), Indonesia; Baltimore Metropolitan Council, Maryland, USA; Guangzhou Securities, Guangzhou, China; Commercial Bank, Arkansas, USA; Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce, IL, USA; NEPSIS Capital Management, Minneapolis, MN, USA; Columbus College of Art and Design, Columbus, OH, USA; The Counter Gourmet Burgers, CA, USA; Cabot Oil & Gas Corp., USA; Valleta, Malta-based Fashion Label Charles Grech; SAC (Scottish Agricultural College) [OLD LOGO], UK; EFG Private Bank, Switzerland; Companion Life Insurance, USA; De Lage Landen (The Low Lands), global provider of leasing, business and consumer finance solutions, including vendor finance and factoring; Kelly Paper Company [Old Logo], Paper Distribution Co for the West Coast, Los Angeles, CA, USA; CIMAT (Centro de Investigación en Matemáticas), Mexico; Lindal Windows, USA; Bournemouth University (OLD LOGO), UK; Caixa Geral de Depósitos, Portuguese State-owned Bank; NASW (National Association of Social Workers), USA; Bitorrent, a protocol supporting the practice of peer-to-peer file sharing that is used to distribute large amounts of data over the Internet. US-brand All-Clad Cookware; Group Commerce, now part of NimbleCommerce. Universidad De La Salle, Bajio, near Leon, Mexico; AFS Intercultural Programs (American Field Service), famed for their international student exchange programs to promote peace and global understanding at a time when it was considered a novelty; Burch Fabrics, USA; Palomar Insurance, Montgomery, AL, USA; INHS (Inland Northwest Health Services), Spokane, WA, USA; Current Sushi Bar, Washington DC, USA; Canggu Club, a members-only Sports, Health and Social Club, Canggu, Bali, Indonesia; Galen Healthcare Private Equity, Stamford, CT, USA; American Anthropological Association; Getz Group of Companies, Medical Products, Pharmaceuticals, Chemicals, CA, USA; Sotique systems integration and software development firm focusing on wireless and embedded systems, Toronto and Vancouver, Canada; QBE Insurance, Sydney, Australia; Great Lakes Chemical Corporation, (OLD LOGO), Chicago, IL, USA (In July 2005, Great Lakes merged with Crompton Corporation [formerly Crompton and Knowles] to form Chemtura Corporation, now headquartered in Philadelphia); Trivium Lakeside Park, Integrated Downtown Development, Lippo Cikarang, West Java, Indonesia; Trivium Terrace Apartments, one of the components of development withn Trivium Lakeside Park, Lippo Cikarang, West Java, Indonesia; Barrier Technologies Workshop, Arlington, VA, USA; Arts Council of Wales, UK; National Arts Centre of Canada (Centre National des Arts du Canada); Fremont Chamber of Commerce, Fremont, CA, USA.
You don’t need to search far and wide to realize that the modern homo sapiensis is inspired by the same thing when it comes to creating logos and corporate identities. The internet has brought the world to our fingertips like never before. Images that we’ve never had access to, or could only see on TV or read in the news irregularly and without our control, are now in cyberspace. All awaiting our discovery… that is if you know where to look. Having the world so much closer, and on our screens, also means that we can see how more similar we all are. How we see our own immediate environments and how that inspires us. Including how businesses and organizations communicate their message through their identity. After all, a Logo is the primary visual identity that the outside world sees. And the internet has enabled us to see the similarities in corporate identity from distant shores, representing organizations that are vastly different and yet have somehow been inspired by the same idea. All brought together by a similar vocabulary of design language!And although two logos may be close to identical, the message they emit is not the same. For its the meaning that customers attach to them according to their culture that gives them the value. In other words, a logo is a sign or symbol that carries a meaning.
“People only value things that have meanings.
Brand building occurs when brand owners understand the meanings of their brands in the customers’ minds. The strongest brands are those that are able to connect with customers on an emotional level through an engaging relationship built on mutual trust. Just like an old friend.
Recognizing this is key to building stronger brands that go beyond functional, and tap into the emotional and symbolic meanings. After all, people value more what things mean than what things are!”
Inspiration: Coal Camp