Visited a logo design site recently, and noticed that they offer cheap design solutions for logo design. You basically have two options: custom-designed or an instant design. The instant design caught my eye. For just $99 you can design your own logo, right online. No muss, no fuss. Just select a symbol, font, and plug in your information, and BAM! your logo is done. The final files (EPS and JPEG) are then available for download, and your use.
However, the other option of custom-design logos starts at the price of $300, and you can see initial design concepts in about 3 days.
Of course, this shows the general lack of respect on behalf of these design "professionals" for a company's brand efforts. And this demonstrates that there are companies that are attracted by cheap and quick solutions for their business problems. The combination of these two factors means that there are companies running around with either confused brands or similar brands (which also confuses the situation).
Unfortunately, the temptation to use cheap graphic design to solve business problems is not exclusive to the graphic design industry. This happens with law, accounting, photography, etc. The desire to accomplish business growth with as little outlay of money is hard to resist. But this has consequences.
According to the U.S. Department of Commerce, 7 out of 10 small businesses will survive their first year, while only 2 will remain after 5 years. Shouldn't that tell you something?
Successful businesses realize that there is a big difference between solutions, and successful solutions.