As a designer, I’ve had many opportunities to create company logos.
It’s one of the best parts of my job. Creating logos gives me the chance to work closely with our clients, be creative, generate ideas, and then share with the client the concepts I have created. It’s exciting to see the client’s reaction as they explore the different colors and shapes that could eventually represent their brand.
Over the years, I’ve seen logos that worked, and some that didn’t. You cannot easily define what makes an effective logo. Your logo invests people in your brand.
It’s all about representing the company, talking to its audience and providing the proper message that the company is aiming to herald.
It’s an elusive target.
However, we can look across the marketing landscape and identify some common elements of effective logos.
Effective company logos are:
A good logo stands out from the crowd. Unique doesn’t mean complicated. In fact, the best logos are not complicated — they’re simple. The image doesn’t necessarily have to show what you do. But it should be simple enough to be read and comprehend immediately.
In addition to being simple and unique, a good logo is easy to remember. Its uniqueness makes it notable enough that it sticks in the viewer’s mind.
An effective logo endures time. Trends come and go, but a neutral logo ensures its timeless quality.
A well-developed logo must be adaptable and scalable. It is versatile enough to be used across different media and printed for digital or TV. It also needs to be recognizable at any size. A logo that doesn’t read well in black and white, or in a small size, is not desirable.
A logo should be pertinent to its brand and industry, but not too literal. It must reflect the company’s value and essence, while also considering the target audience and their unique needs.
A logo for a bank must elicit feelings of stability and prudence. On the other hand, a logo for a toy store must elicit feelings of fun and childhood wonder. Those are two different businesses with two different logos.
Can Company Logos Tell a Story?
A good logo successfully does all these things.
But does it tell your organization’s story? No, it doesn’t.
A good logo will entice people to your brand and express the essence of your company values. But it is just a snippet of who you are. It’s not enough to express the entire story.
Telling your company story requires a broader vehicle. There are many other vehicles, including your tagline, website, marketing materials, and strategic documents such as case studies, press releases and annual reports that can tell your company story.
Your company logo is just the starting point of the process to intrigue your audience.
In your opinion, which company logos are effective at being simple and memorable while expressing their company’s values?
Which logos have stood the test of time?
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