Is a logo just something in a brand? Or is a brand an afterthought that came after the logo? Either way one isn’t far behind one another. A logo and a brand are two very different entities that must work parallel to one another. Here is a quick explanation of what a logo is, what a brand is, and how they are different.
What is a logo?
- An easily recognisable, reproducible design element
- A quick, visual representation of a brand’s message and position
- A well-designed logo should evoke some memory or emotion from the viewer depending on their relationship with the brand
- A logo is a tool to help communicate a brand and represent a brand
What is a brand?
Every interaction with, and marketing practice of, a name or design that identifies and differentiates one business, product, or service from another. A brand encompasses the positioning, the messaging and communications, the visual design, the target market, the voice, the marketing and promotions, the presence, and the experience any individual has with the business, product or service online, offline, or in person.
One way to think of it is, a logo all by itself is just a graphic with a name. A brand is a way the company communicates what your brand is capable of doing and it’s passions.
Now that’s settled, how can you future-proof your logo and get right the first time so you don’t need to change your logo and branding future down the line?
What are the main considerations when designing a logo?
- Simplicity and memorability
- Visual representation of a company or brand’s values, beliefs and functions.
- Representing the business the right way?
- How the logo will look on products/does it work black and white?
- How will it appear in advertising and marketing materials?
- How will it tie in with existing another branding?
- Possible thoughts and emotions associated with logo (colour/shapes etc.)
Did you know they’re five types of logos?
Icon/Symbol logo designs like Nike, Apple and Twitter are simple but bold. Usually, the imagery used is abstract and stylised to give visual interest.
Most companies that use this type will have a very simple main logo but may choose to create additional alternative versions in some cases. The human mind can easily remember a simple form – a symbol can express certain ideas much more effectively than text.
Letter Mark logos use a symbol representing the company through the use of its initials or the first letter of the brand. Lettermarks are often very simple – similar to wordmarks, (comprised of text – we’ll get to them in second), but highlight the company’s initials rather than their full name. Lettermark logo assigns equal visual weight to every word in the name of your company, which may make them easier for customers to remember.
Word Mark logos are uniquely styled text logos that spell out the company or brand name. Custom fonts are created specifically for brands to use across all their marketing and branding. In a recent study of logos belonging to top 100 brands in the world, 37% consisted only of text, often using a stylised font.
Combination Mark designs are built up of a wordmark and a symbol/icon – (occasionally known as iconic logotypes) This gives flexibility for the use of either or both elements across a variety of applications. A well-designed combination mark looks just as good with the elements separate as it does with them together. Spell out the name of a company whilst associating it with a visual icon.
Emblem designs capture the company name within the design. Unlike combination marks, which position text and symbols side-by-side, emblems place text inside symbol – often the two are practically inseparable. Care needs to be taken with emblem logos, especially when working with print – text needs to be small enough to fit inside of the symbol, these types of logos may not always print legibly at smaller sizes.
Now you know why so many famous brands work purely based on their logo design alone and I’d imagine and hope you have some ideas for your businesses branding and logo design. For more help why don’t you check out these other blogs about branding, logo design and marketing in general…