Each day, we are bombarded by messages, advertisements and products that seek to grab our attention. Whether it’s a billboard, storefront window, magazine or digital media site, brands are constantly developing messages to outshine one another, all in an effort to build loyal audiences and make a sale. With so much competition and limited time, brands only have a few valuable seconds to get their messages across before the consumer move on to the next product, service or post.
This is why logos are arguably one of the most important aspects of a brand’s identity. In a millisecond, a logo can speak volumes about your product or service, often more effectively than long, lengthy prose. When done correctly, a logo can give your brand the boost, exposure and attention you’ve always wanted and can help carry your message.
But when done sloppily, a logo can be detrimental. This week, two very prominent organizations found that out the hard way. The L.A. Chargers and Mozilla both released new logos, and the internet was immediately ready with critique, proving that failing to take proper time and care can end up an embarrassment at best, and damaging at worst.
The L.A. Chargers revealed their pointed, Dodger-esque logo last Thursday, to much chagrin of their fans and the rest of the Twittersphere. It wasn’t long before trolls and internet commenters popped out the memes.
my favorite feature of the new LA Chargers logo is how easily you can color it into a turtle pic.twitter.com/wlHRG8q4XM
— uɐɯssnS ʇʇɐW (@suss2hyphens) January 12, 2017
Likewise, Mozilla’s fans were left scratching their heads at the emoji ambiguity.
— Engadget (@engadget) January 18, 2017
Granted, these logos could have been much worse. But the agencies and companies that developed them undoubtedly spent painstaking efforts to get a creative, high-quality new look — only to fall flat. Thus, it is vitally important for brands and businesses to take extra time to focus on the meaning, implications and detail of their logos, from color to font choice. Check out these coiski tips on how to make sure your logo is the absolute best it can be.
Keep It Simple
First and foremost, logos must be simple and clean.
There are two main aspects to every logo design: the text and the mark. Working hand-in-hand, these elements really build your brand identity. When choosing a font, be sure its “personality” matches your brand’s. Apple’s fonts, for example are thin and clean, much like their modern, simple stores and product line. They use Myriad, Lucida Grande and Helvetica Neue (and more recently, Avenir), which are all sans serifs. Their mark matches their font with a solid, simple icon. Text should always be readable, and marks should always be strong.
Make It Accurate
Be sure your logo accurately depicts your brand. This is actually what the new Mozilla logo actually has going for it – it connects with the “geek culture” by using the :// within the logo. However, it came off as too cheesy and “easy” for true designers. Successful logos, like the Nike swoosh, accurately portray the overall attitude of a particular company or product line. For example, the swoosh indicates a forward-motion, and the newest iterations of Nike text usually include the + sign.
Logos must work well on a variety of platforms. Its concept should be versatile enough to look good on a business card or a stocking cap. It should transcend platform and be able to succeed no matter what the texture or orientation. This is why more solid, defined logos often work the best. Likewise, your logo colors should be flexible enough to work with different patterns or backgrounds. This is why most successful logos are only one or two colors.
Make it Memorable
Of course, logos must make a lasting impression. With only a few seconds to grab your attention, brands really need to bring out the creative team. The most memorable logos are usually those that are simplest. For example, the FedEx logo makes use of typography to create a right-facing arrow between the “e” and the “x” (you can’t un-see it now!). Subconscious or not, it has stood the test of time and is pleasing to the eye. Watch out, however, as the the L.A. Charger’s logo was memorable for all the wrong reasons. Be sure to test yours out with employees, potential audiences and consumers before making a negative impression.