The world is inundated with logos. We see them when we open our phones, emails or turn on almost any device. Your company’s logo is your stamp on the world. It’s a visual symbol, that when done correctly, can reveal l everything from brand positioning to brand personality. As a result, your logo can have a powerful impact on how your audience and customers perceive your brand. Designing a logo that captures your brand’s authenticity and true essence begins with understanding the types of logos out there.
What is a Logo?
A logo is not a brand, and a brand is not a logo. A logo is a visual signifier an individual or an organization uses to represent its brand. It is one component of a brand’s visual identity. Logos may include typography, symbols, or any combination that makes a brand distinct and memorable. They are complex systems of color, imagery, and aesthetic style.
Different Types of Logos
Determining the correct type of logo for your brand is the first step to creating a logo that will be your first impression, the constant reminder of your brand’s essence. Many different types of logos and a combination of types offer a unique way to speak about your brand. Logos range from text-based to image-based, static to dynamic and literal to symbolic. There is absolutely no shortage of successful logo styles.
When you make your choice for a logo, it should be deliberate. Base your decision on research and in-depth brand strategy. Different logos have different effects on your audience. So choose wisely and be well-advised. Let’s look at several types of logos:
Combination Logos: They are what they say they are. Combination logos utilize both words and symbols. Logos like this are what most people think of when they think of a logo. However, there may be better choices for your brand. For example, combination logos can be placed side-by-side, stacked, or put together in an image. Logos of this nature are also typically easier to trademark than symbols alone.
Combination logos immediately associate your brand with a symbol and a name. The issue with these logos is that they often need to be simplified.
Wordmark Logos: Wordmarks are stand-alone words or a word – your brand name – and are easy to read. They feature a distinctive typeface. Wordmarks are the simplest form of brand expression. They represent an idea beyond the name they spell.
Letterform Logos: As you guessed, a letterform logo features a singular letter representing a brand. Letterforms must be designed to cultivate a bold brand personality. Successful letterforms evoke the full brand name in the customer’s mind. An advantage of letterforms is that they are easily scalable. They can be easily reduced for app icons, social media, etc.
Monogram Logos: Monogram logos differ from letterforms. Instead of a single letter, they use multiple letters, usually the brand’s acronym. IBM, HBO, and YSL are all examples of monogram logos. They provide a brand’s visual identity and can vary in levels of sophistication. However, a downside to a monogram logo is that while simple, it can often be challenging to read or hard to remember. Therefore, this type of logo is not recommended for a starting brand.
Abstract Logo: Abstract logos feature a pictorial image or an abstract form. They should be simple yet significant. This type of logo is more effective for multi-divisional, service-based, and technological brands. Examples would be Apple, NBC, and Starbucks.
Mascot Logos: Some of the most successful brands have loveable characters featured front and center in their logos. This logo is great for family-friendly brands seeking to appeal to children. Unfortunately, mascot logos feel tied to a bygone era of advertising. If your brand wants more seriousness, mascot logos are not recommended.
Emblem Logos: An emblem logo houses a wordmark, letterform, or abstract logo within a shape. Simplicity here is the goal. Scalability is a downside. They can become illegible as it is reduced for mobile or social media.
Dynamic Logos: In today’s world, “online” and “digital” are everywhere, and there are fewer instances where logos are not visible in digital media. Dynamic logos are defined by their changing, digital nature. They can morph and take the form of mini-narratives. They are the most modern form of a dynamic logo.
3D Logos: Execution is the key to a 3D logo. A 3D logo can infuse a brand’s mark with a memorable uniqueness when done with restraint and minimalism. Brands in technology and design are good candidates for 3D logos. They evoke the hyper-realistic user experiences they bring to life.
Animated Logos: Animated logos are becoming increasingly popular in the digital age. With the element of movement, they often convey an extra meaning in the process. They can be set to play on repeat or play once during the loading of a homepage. Many brands have animated versions of their logos that play only in specific environments. Think Dreamworks.
How Do I Know What Logo Is Right for My Brand?
It would be simple to grab a generic logo and slap it on something with your brand name. Of course, it would, but would it evoke the response you wanted for your brand? You want your logo to elicit the same reaction that your brand does. Different logos leave audiences with different impressions. A well-designed logo offers benefits like the following:
- Inviting the interest of new customers
- Differentiating your brand from competitors
- Promoting brand awareness and recognition
- Influencing potential investors
- Communicating what your brand is about.
To truly understand what type of logo you need, you must understand your brand. Dragon Horse Agency has a team to help you do just that. We know your logo isn’t your brand, but you need one. It tells the story of your identity. We will walk you through the essential questions to help you determine what logo is suitable for you.
- What is your business objective?
- What is the competition doing?
- What brand equity do you have?
- How complex is your brand name?
- Are you trying to grab attention or assert your uniqueness?
The truth is, creating a logo can be challenging. But never fear; Dragon Horse will take the simple elements of color, typefaces, and symbols to create a signature that is as unique to your brand as it is memorable. The end product is a powerful logo that speaks the profound truth about your brand.
Dragon Horse was founded in 2015, headquartered in Naples, FL, with offices in Santa Monica, CA, is a multi-award-winning business marketing leader offering services designed to achieve clients’ goals. Dragon Horse is the next generation creative syndicate, a marketing and business strategy agency, combining synergies of in-depth skill sets in one integrated, comprehensive solution for business success.