Best Approach For Mod

our categories are in a tree view.. nested 3-4 levels deep (not my idea)

and we have and addon that sums the product quantities of each node in the tree as viewed..

anyhow.. the current UI has a blue circle with the product count.. they are all the same..

hard to tell when u have some/none..maybe low.... from the ui..

anyhow.. i want to change that colored circle..

found the code.... nothing built in...

i need to change the css class

so, I have to make a modified copy of the tpl file..

do I add a hook around that feature.. to return the classname

or just hard code the new if this/else that

either way I have to mod the file...