|We are visual creatures by design, it has been scientifically proven that we respond more viscerally and enthusiastically to visual stimulus than we do to any other kind of stimulus. As such first visual impressions are incredibly important, no more so than if you’re trying to run a successful business and stick your head up above the masses. Indeed, some of the most popular businesses of the past hundred years have used their visual identity as a vital tool for selling their product or service and the crux of that visual identity is the humble logo.|
A logo is an immediately identifiable symbol that sums up the businesses ideals, identity and status in one bold, unique image. “What makes a good logo a good logo” is a question that doesn’t have an easy answer, in fact if it did, the world would be so inundated with great logos that the very idea of ‘good’ or ‘bad’ would cease to matter entirely. Ultimately whether or not the consumer finds your logo appealing or not is a personal opinion that more than likely cannot be dissuaded. There are a few guidelines you should be following to give yourselves the best chance though.
What should my logo look like?
A good logo should be relevant to the company its representing, should be effective, simple and clean. A snapshot that consumers will be able to clock in less than a second. You can’t please everybody but you can do your best you please as many people as possible, something globally revered brands such as Apple and Windows understand all too well. The Apple logo for example is as simple as it gets, in fact the only reason it has a piece bitten out if it is because company founder Steve Jobs didn’t want customers confusing the apple with a cherry. The Windows logo too is a ubiquitous symbol that can be found on everything now from laptops and phones to tablets and games consoles.
Both symbols are incredibly simple but have become powerful branding tools over time through the power of association. Building this association is not something that can happen instantly but over time as the brand spreads and your business grows, the logo will almost become its own salesman as it sits above all of your businesses letterheads, websites and advertising campaigns.
How does a logo impact a customer opinion of your business?
A logo isn’t going to be the difference between whether or not a consumer buys your product or service but it will go a long way towards drawing their attention in the first place. Consider the McDonalds ‘golden arches’. On paper it’s little more than a giant golden ‘M’ painted on a bright red background but in practice it’s got an almost religious connotation to it. Indeed, organised religions can be thought of as the first organisations to truly use logos to their fullest potential. Your logo should be the first thing your customers see and the first thing that comes into their minds when they think about your brand.
How does a logo make your brand more recognisable?
Simply put, once your logo becomes entrenched in the public consciousness it will become as important as, if not more important than your businesses actual name. As such when designing a logo you should really be asking yourselves the same questions you were asking when you were first brainstorming your businesses name. What does it say? Is it memorable? Could it be confused with anything else? The answers you want to these questions depends very much on the business you’re running and the marketplace you’re intending to enter but more often than not you’ll want a logo that is small, malleable and uncomplicated.
Using Apple as an example again, their initial logo was a complicated picture of Isaac Newton sitting under a tree. Whilst the idea behind the logo was clever, the logo itself was messy and unrecognisable. When the company changed its logo to the now universally recognised ‘bitten apple’, its stock rose substantially. I’m not saying that the logo change was the sole reason for the companies shift in fortunes but it almost certainly helped.
Ultimately a good logo does not make a business, but the power of a dynamic, attractive and unique logo cannot be overstated. So take time to truly think about your logo, or seek the help of experienced professional designers to help deliver the perfect symbol for your brand.
Author Bio: Rebecca Fox is a marketing graduate who enjoys writing about all things branding, business and print for the Whitefields Document Storage blog