A logo is a key element in helping communicate a company’s brand.
Generally it is the most identifiable image associated with a business, serving as an immediate visual cue. About 9 percent of logos don’t even include the name of the company, but rely on the emblem to represent and highlight the brand.
When developing a logo, there are various key elements to consider for a successful design.
Choice of color has an important and immediate impact on logo recognition and brand representation. A company’s color scheme has been shown to increase brand recognition by up to 80 percent.
And there is a psychology of color that researchers have long shown to elicit human emotions, reactions and associations. Blue, for example, is a cool calming color that creates a sense of trust, security and order. It’s no surprise that so many financial institutions and healthcare companies choose a variation of blue for their logos and other imagery to take advantage of these characteristics. Both red and yellow are considered “high-impact” colors, with red often representing power, energy and passion, and yellow associating with optimism and hope.
Less is more
Overly complex logos will be mistakes rather than masterpieces. This includes simplicity in color: 95 percent of the top brand logos use just one or two tones as their primary color(s). Convoluted design and imagery will distract from a company’s name, message and brand. Such mishaps can sometimes reveal a company’s lack of focus, direction or other core problems.
“When a company isn’t fully clear about its brand and mission in the first place, designing a logo largely becomes just an exercise in aesthetics, and often a failed one,” says Aaron Lee, CEO and founder of Illuminati Studios.
Even if an intricate design is an attractive piece of art in itself, there are practical issues to consider. Will it replicate clearly and effectively in a wide variety of formats, backgrounds and sizes? Designing a logo on a clear digital canvas looks different than how it will appear on hard-copy collaterals, buildings, vehicle signage, and even more challenging promotional material such as on pens, golf balls, and clothing. About 93 percent of logos are smartly designed to fit in these small spaces.
But make it special
The most important aspect of a logo is to make it meaningful, memorable and differentiating, even if it is a simple mark. The Nike swoosh is often referenced as one of these great minimalist icons—and it is. But we wouldn’t think this way if the company itself wasn’t so visionary and wildly successful.
So, while a logo is not THE brand, it must represent the brand. The design should be unique, and evoke the most valuable and important (not all!) characteristics of your company.
“A great logo will define and symbolize the brand’s customers as much as it does the company itself,” Lee says. “That kind of connection, loyalty and oneness between company and customer is what branding is all about. The best logos not only just communicate, but they elevate this bond as well.”
Contact us or comment here if you have questions about designing or updating your company’s logo.