The YMCA in the US has dropped the final three letters of its name to become ’The Y’. If you could brand anything with just one letter, what would it be?

If I had to rebrand using only one letter, I’d rebrand Elle magazine with the letter ’L’ – using the sound of the letter to refer to the name. I’m not sure the YMCA has thought its rebranding through fully, however. Is the answer to the old question ’Young man, what do you want to be?’ now just ’Y’?
Joana Niemeyer, Founder, April

I’d love the chance to rebrand myself. In a perfect world, I’d see myself as Ian Fleming’s M, but all too often I feel more like Franz Kafka’s K. In the real world, I do think it’s important to remember that branding is all about how your audience perceives you (your company or product) – you can’t make people like you by putting on quirky clothes or changing your name. Your brand will only work if it is honest and accurately communicates your values.
Michael Smith, Director, Cog Design

To condense a brand name to just one letter, that letter needs to instantly represent the essence of the brand physically and be memorable from the form of the original brand name. ’O’ springs to mind instantly for the Olympics. The five rings of the symbol, the global inclusion, track events, ball-based sports, gymnastic rings and medals all relate to the form of the first letter. The O then draws the eye to its large central space within ’Olympics’, and wins the race to represent the brand through its dominance and distinctive form.
Jo Kotas, Managing director, Bunch

That’s a tricky one. Can I use two? No? Okay. I would use a lower case ’i’ and then I would invent a mobile phone, a music pod, a site to host ’tunes’, a laptop and a pad. My colleagues don’t think it will take off, but I’m confident.
Marksteen Adamson, Founding partner, Arthur Steen Horne Adamson

What about ’the Q’, for the Post Office?
Tony Allen, Chief executive, Fortune Street

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