[tweetmeme]Have you noticed – how could you miss it – that the familiar Google logo is nowhere to be seen on the search engine’s landing page? Instead, a soft green Google logo, with a sports figure matching the day’s events at the Winter Olympics, has replaced the colorful one that about a billion searchers see each day.
If you’re a sports fan, you may love it. But a lot of people actually hate it (OK, maybe my friend is not representative of the universe). They want the familiar Google. And, remember, not everyone is a sports fan.
But there is a larger issue here: should a company tamper with its brand identity when it is the category leader? That’s putting it mildly for Google. Yet, we’ve seen damage inflicted on companies that tied their brand to a celebrity and/or a particular sport when things turned sour (read Accenture and Tiger Woods).
On the other hand, the Olympics generate a tremendous amount of excitement and pride in the athletes and their countries. That can provide a “halo” effect for a company like Google.
So, what do you think?