Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Iconography - has it changed ??

I was discussing this word in the context of alcoholic brands and their bottles the other day with some colleagues. But I have since been thinking about iconic things. The photo above is something I walk past every morning to get my coffee. Its something that is typically iconic about the UK. An icon that is something tangible that people associate with this country. I still have to pinch myself every time I walk past such things. Just as much as I used to pinch myself every time I saw the Sydney Opera House or Harbour bridge. I think it is more the emotional experience that I link to such icons. I suppose if we looked right back. People had some what of an emotional experience through religious icons as well.

So are we at a point where times are changing and so are the things that we find iconic. Does that mean that the new icons are now brands.

Where do I start. The Coca Cola red that changed Santa’s suit. The gold arches. The Mercedes emblem at the end of the hood. These are all things that are deemed as iconic. But they are all tangible elements of brands. Has this changed? Have we started to move to the next level to detail our own individual meanings on the iconography of brands through our own experiences.

Can I say that I see diesel as an iconic brand for all the cool stuff they do. Or is it because of the experience I had when I bought my first pair of real designer jeans and the emotional attachment I had to that. Can I say that Sony is a really iconic brand for the driving of technology with things like the walkman, PlayStation and as well as the recent Bravia ads or is it because I had a walkman when I was a teenager and it was my first bit of adult technology. I ended up breaking it because I used to it too much. Or the Sony digital camera I have, that has captured some of my favourite moments with friends, family, travelling, as well as other weird things along the way.

So lets bring out peoples emotional experiences with brands and make those the icons to use to gain more attachment to brands. Do I trust a red can or an individual’s heart felled story…..

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