Brand Icons Need Maximum Exposure

Brand Icons Need Maximum Exposure, by John Malmo

Memphis, TN – One great benefit of a good brand icon is the potential it offers for extending brand awareness in ways that even advertising can't. As a director of the company for many years, I was privileged to watch the development of the Serta Counting Sheep. The Counting Sheep more than doubled consumer brand awareness and transformed Serta from the number three to the number one brand.

Beyond TV, the Counting Sheep were everywhere. On baseball caps, store banners, and tote bags. Huge stuffed Counting Sheep were in bedding and furniture stores. These extensions not only increased brand awareness, but they also caused consumers to interact physically and emotionally with the brand.

The ten year old Aflac duck is finally getting the extension it deserves. Aflac just competed a major design project with the duck, and it's becoming an integral part of everything graphic in the company. One wonders why it took Aflac ten years to maximize its use of the duck.

If your company has a brand icon, it should be everywhere the company is. You're cheating the brand of value if the icon is not thoroughly involved in everything internally and externally. Now that Aflac is extending the duck throughout, its equity will increase exponentially.

John Malmo is a marketing consultant who concentrates on helping business owners grow their businesses with effective marketing. To reach Mr. Malmo, hear and read more of his commentaries, or ask him a direct question, go to