These days logos are everywhere. We see them on buildings, business cards, billboards, buses, taxis, lamposts, food packets, print ads, TV ads and just about everywhere else you can stick a message. And they sell computers, clothes, cars, cosmetics, finances, food, fashion and fags, appliances, airlines and activities, and just about anything else in between.
There are good logos and bad logos, some change on a regular basis, others stay the same for years. We’re told logos must have colour because certain colours convey certain meanings yet logos must be instantly recognisable in black and white.
We’re told that generally a logo must be unique yet instantly recognisable and that each element of the logo has meaning. Logo designers sharp, straight lines communicate a strong, trustworthy brand.
Curved lines on the other hand communicate a caring and supportive product or service. The rationale for combining curved and straight lines is an ambitious company.
And we’re told that everyone should have a logo because they represent the brand and make you stand out from the crowd.
But are logos still relevant? I believe they are, certainly for a lot of businesses but the problem is far too many of them are created on the cheap. It’s important to get your logo design done properly. It always amazes me how many firms won’t spend money on a good logo.
Here’s an interesting infographic on the strategy required for a perfect logo from the design gurus at designmantic.
On the whole, it’s a good guide to creating a solid, robust, consistent, relevant, unique logo but be warned it isn’t the silver bullet that will allow your brand to outshine all your competitors.
And you need to take some of the comments with a pinch of salt.
For instance, the suggestion that the Windows logo delivers one clear message instead of giving multiple messages is a bit of a stretch and besides, the idea of one message for all target markets is outdated.
This is because first, why would you talk to all customers in the same way? Certainly it hasn’t worked for Windows –their share of the OS market is down from 95% to about 15% despite spending at least $5 billion over the last 10 years.
And of course there are some very successful brands that don’t have logos. Think Mobil, Etsy, FedEx, Craigslist, at&t, Sony, Coca Cola and Google for that matter.
So, before you decide on whether or not to create a logo, talk to someone who knows a bit about building brands. It’ll be one of the smartest investments you make.
Marcus Osborne is founder and CEO of Kuala Lumpur-based Fusionbrand. You can read more from Marcus on his blog Brand Consultant Asia.