Tips for Designing a Logo
What is a logo?
Simply put, a logo is a name, symbol, or trademark of a company or organization. Logos can be made up of text that is configured in a unique way. Your logo can be an illustration with your company’s name on or around the illustration. Or your logo can be a symbol. A logo may also be a combination of these, but its goal is always to project the company’s intended image.
Types of Logos
Words in their purest form ARE images. Type fonts come in all shapes and sizes, which convey different impressions on the audience. A thick font conveys strength and power. A script font conveys elegance and austerity, and a slanted typeface conveys movement. Your company name thus can be your own logo, provided your type font displays the intended qualities of the organization.
The following logo is an example of a text logo we did for the Council of American Structural Engineers:
A symbol uses an image or images that convey an actual or abstract representation of a business. Because a symbol alone is less direct than text, it leaves itself open to a wider interpretation of what the business is about. Using a symbol in your logo has several possibilities.
It may be a take on a company name. One example would be showing a logo with an ocean wave in a company that calls themselves “Wavelength Optics,” which has nothing to do with the ocean but is actually an optical engineering business.
It may create an entirely new symbolic meaning. For instance, people did not originally associate the Nike “swoosh” with the company. But due to its corporate rise and presence everywhere, people have immediately grown to think “Nike” whenever they see a swoosh. The same is true for the McDonald’s golden arches, or a national flag.
A brief amount of text, or sometimes just an abbreviation, compliments the symbol and provides that extra bit of clarity of what the business is about.
There are many choices to consider when deciding the logo that best fits the image of your company. Never limit yourself to one option. It can be very easy to see an image you personally like and think it would look attractive in one format without giving thought to how it will look everywhere else. In the end, it’s not about what you want your logo to look like. How your audience will perceive your logo that is more important.
Fullbrite Learning is an excellent example of good use of text (in a “child-like” typeface) and symbols (teacher/mother reading with children):
- Your logo should be compatible with your image
- Your logo design should be simple
- Your logo should be unique and recognizable