The Power of a Great Logo
Logos: They’re not about aesthetic or personal taste. They’re not statements, they’re not messages, and they’re not your tagline. They’re definitely not your brand. But, of course, you already know this.
The purpose of a logo is to communicate. Your logo briefly sums up your brand and your businesses identity, and communicates that to the viewer. But it doesn’t explain your products or services. For example, The Rolling Stones are eclectic, sexy, free, and bold. Starbucks is quality, hand-crafted, friendly, and unique. Neither of these logos contain music notes or coffee, and they don’t explicitly tell you what each other does. They do express the brand’s values visually, and allow your audience to identify with the brand or not.
I know that sounds like a mouthful, but now that you’re crystal clear, let’s look at why we need a good logo.
With Great Logo Comes Great Opportunity
Your logo is possibly the most important visual tactic you will ever possess for your brand identity. It is the simplest yet most hard-working manifestation of you and your brand. It will become a visual signifier for all you represent and stand for, the embodiment of your brand and the symbol around which you rally.
A well-designed logo will be visually unique, express the core essence of your brand, position you appropriately in the marketplace and resonate with your audience. A great logo that’s instantly recognizable and connects with its customers can work wonders for your brand’s profitability too. You won’t need to be watching an ad, reading a blog or following social media to know what the brand is about. The power of a great logo can really engage on it’s own merit. A more engaged audience can increase in size quicker. And a larger audience, is a more profitable audience.
For example, the I Love New York logo is perhaps one of the most easily recognizable logos in the world. Almost everyone has met someone rockin’ the t-shirt. The innovative use of the heart as the “love” became ingrained in New York culture, boosting tourism, in turn feeding the economy of the city that never sleeps.
Or, take a look at the Toronto Raptors logo evolution. In an effort to capture a more adult audience, the Raptors removed the signature cartoon dinosaur. When their Barney-esque logo was removed they left behind his ferocious claw marks slashed into the logo’s basketball, thus, positioning the franchise in a much more profitable, merch-saavy populace.
Your logo is not a sign of quality…
It’s a sign of the quality.
Be Careful Out There
There are plenty of companies that offer…how do I put this diplomatically…sub-par quality. If you’re truly invested in creating a great logo (which we’ve already established, you should be), ensure you’re doing your research and are investing in industry professionals with the expertise that logo design requires. Often, companies that offer logos for cheap conduct themselves unethically and take advantage of young up-andcomers. They frequently operate under the thin veil of “contests.” The designers are more-or-less just hoping that their design is chosen. The artists who aren’t chosen aren’t paid for their time at all, and the artists who are, are compensated at outrageously unfair rates. You know who you are. Shame.
To be clear, I am not saying up-and-comers shouldn’t be given opportunities, and if you find one you trust, that’s terrific. Experts always start off as beginners, and if you take a chance on an educated and informed new-comer, you could be changing their lives, while getting an awesome logo for your business!
You’re Worth It
Look, starting a business and establishing a brand is a difficult venture in any capacity. It requires plenty of dedication, hard-work, sacrifice, and money. When the stars finally align, and you’re ready to launch, you shouldn’t want your logo to be anything less than perfect. It’s a direct reflection of all you’ve put into your company. Investing in a good logo isn’t just investing in your brand, it’s investing in yourself, your vision, and your future.
What is it that separates the mundane from the extraordinary?
You Know the “Why”, Here’s the “How”
Most branding experts will tell you that a great logo contains 5 essential qualities:
Simplicity – don’t overthink it.
Relevancy – keep up with the times.
Memorability – keep your audience thinking about you.
Scalability – make sure it looks good at any size.
Distinctiveness – create something that is unique to you.
These are all important qualities to keep in mind. However, artists will also break conventions in certain instances when warranted. Is it truly art if it follows all the rules? For example, a complex design can be equally impressive if beautifully crafted with a purpose. And keeping up with the times could be cause for bringing back an old-school style. What really matters is that it leaves an indelible impression in the hearts and minds of the audience.
Content, Hook, & Wow!
Three Elements That Never Fail. A great logo will most likely have them all. Here’s why:
CONTENT is the principle subject of the brand. The brand’s gist, meaning, and significance. Engaging content is simple to read, easy to understand, and interesting. It tells a story that draws readers in and captures their imagination. Good content answers questions and creates a thirst for more good content and ideally for the services you provide. And let’s not forget about your name. Naming is extremely significant to take into account and like a good logo, the name of your brand is never something to overlook when crafting a meaningful image for your brand.
HOOK is a message that sparks someone’s curiosity, grabs their attention, and won’t let them go until they’ve had enough. And just like fishing, people can be elusive, you need to attract them, and keep them on the line. Your headline can be jaw-dropping, your copy can be creative, but you’re probably not going to have too much success without a great hook.
WOW is the excitement, admiration and ultimate approval from your audience. According to some experts, humans have 27 seconds to make a first impression. Some psychologists have even concluded first impressions can be formed in a tenth of a second! While that’s daunting in a first-date setting, it’s imperative to consider in logo design. While we all like to think of ourselves as people who “don’t judge a book by its cover,” the truth is, we’re making snap judgments constantly. These judgements are based on what we’re seeing, feeling, and thinking, along with our innate ability to determine when something is just…WOW!
Content: Into the Blue’s name is inspired by passion, knowledge, and respect for marine biology.
Hook: Into the Blue’s logo letterforms come alive, representing a coral reef.
Wow: Into the Blue’s typography looks cool and fun. It makes you smile. When it morphs, it’s even better!
“Most processes leave out the stuff no one wants to talk about: magic, intuition and leaps of faith.”
~ Michael Bierut
The truth is, you’ll know when you’ve created the logo that is right for you. It’s an intuitive feeling. Take a leap of faith, often the magic happens outside of your comfort zone.
You’re So Much More
Your logo is so much more than a generic, Canva-made postage stamp. Your logo is so much more than something that “looks cool.” Your logo is so much more than what appears on the letter-head of your invoices. Your logo is who you are, and the values you hold as a company. Your logo is uniquely you. It is uniquely reminiscent of your brand. And if you do it right, you’ll feel it. You’ve built your business from the ground-up, now find a logo that shows us all you’ve put into it. I know you’ll make the right choice.
Be bold. Be Brave. Be brilliant.