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Accidental branding

Ann Turner Cook, famous infant model AKA "The Gerber Baby," has passed away at age 95.

Her story is an interesting case of accidental, even reluctant branding. The identity of the Gerber baby was a secret for years. Ann didn't openly share her backstory, either.

Interesting facts:

  • Ann was a retired school teacher, a widow living in Florida

  • Ann's father, Bethel, was an illustrator, but...

  • ...Ann's baby image was sketched by a family neighbor, Dorothy Hope Smith

  • The artist submitted what she thought of as an unfinished sketch, but Gerber liked it as was

  • The Gerber baby's image has sold baby food by the billions

  • The baby model accepted a settlement payment of $5,000 in 1951, the only compensation she received during the 90+ years Gerber has used the image

  • Gerber HQ has a quiet presence in Fremont, Michigan [with plans to relocate to Arlington, Virginia]

Want tips to improve your branding?

Check out the video below and enjoy Michael's masterclass on branding, delivered to the sales team at Sweetwater Sound in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

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