Google spent nothing—Sergey Brin just opened up the free graphics app Gimp. Same with Coca-Cola—though John Pemberton’s bookkeeper drew the logo’s Spencerian script by hand. Nike famously gave just $35 to a design student. Which used to be an impressively thrifty figure, until Twitter picked up their ubiquitous bird for a mere $15 on iStockPhoto.
These, obviously, represent the low-end of what some of the world’s biggest companies have spent on their branding. The figures are from a list recently assembled by Stocklogos and Business Insider, which Trendland turned into a series of infographics. And if you think a company that spends nothing on their logo is a bit nauseating, wait until you see the opposite end of the spectrum.
Pepsi spent $1 million on their Obama-esque rebranding a few years back, and the BBC spent almost double that on a logo that basically just untoggled the italics button. But that’s nothing compared to the $221 million BP paid to make their oil company look like a new-age organic grocer—though maybe it was one of the few cases where we can all agree it was worth every penny. (It’s not clear from the stats here whether that $221 million was just for design services, or for the rebranding campaign, in which case $221 million is probably low.)Alongside the more extreme spends, the $100,000 a close-to-bankrupt Steve Jobs paid Paul Rand for his profitless startup NeXT seems pretty close to market value.