A Fresh (Branded) Gmail Experience

Yesterday, Google began its rolling release of the its newest novelty — Gmail themes! Hooray!

The customizable, personalized iGoogle pages have had themes for a while now, so extending Google’s already masterful grasp on theming to Gmail appears to be nothing short of a logical progression.? And, as all things Google usually are, Gmail themes are really, really great!? But that’s not what is most interesting about this fresh Gmail experience.

Google has,? arguably,? one of the strongest brands worldwide.? ? Its name and colorfully lettered logo both conjure connotations of reliability, ease, and a quirky fun.? Google, although treating their products and solutions very seriously, has never taken itself too seriously.? It’s evident during every holiday or special occasion worldwide when Google alters their logo slightly to express the occassion visually.

There’s no rigidity with Google’s brand, even though there is a strength and it is consistently one of the most recognizalble.? Google’s brand, instead of demanding a rigid look and feel, relies moreso on its personality.? That personality, that emotional connection, the confidence in their brand are major reasons why they have such a strong presence and outstanding level of success.

And the fun-loving Google continues to extend that confidence with the release of Gmail themes, where a handful of the themes created haven’t just added to the Gmail logo, but have completely changed it entirely.? In what some may consider a risky branding move (losing a certain amount of brand identity), Google sees as a further extension of their core brand personality.? It’s this levity, this laid back confidence that empowers Google’s brand personality.? Simply put — Google is fun, Gmail is fun.. so have some fun with a fresh Gmail experience.

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