Few corporate symbols are as ubiquitous as a cup of coffee with the Starbucks insignia or the McDonald's "Golden Arches." In instances like these, brand images serve as a
common language that transcends the boundaries of corporate America and evokes the same positive feelings among consumers the world over. And, according to the 2006
BusinessWeek/Interbrand "Best Global Brands" survey, the usual heavyweights - Coca-Cola, Microsoft and IBM - round out the top three, underscoring the impact brand,
identity and reputation can have on bottom-line results.