There are 6 types of logo designs: which is best for you?
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There are 6 types of logo designs: but which type of logo is right for you?
Why should you choose an emblem?
- Your brand wants to convey a sense of tradition and/or longevity.
- You are looking for your logo to convey a sense of gravitas.
Why might you avoid an emblem?
- Your logo needs to scale. Emblems don’t look great shrunk down really small (like to favicon size on a website), and don’t read well from far away (like on a billboard).
Why should you choose a logotype?
- You’re a new company that wants to get your name out there.
- Your brand has a short name that won’t feel overwhelming when plastered everywhere as a logo.
- Your name is your brand (e.g. you’re a photographer). Logotypes help reinforce the tie between visual memory and name recognition.
Why might you avoid a logotype?
- You don’t want to update your logo regularly. Fonts follow trends. Helvetica may be all the rage these days, but in a few years it may feel as dated as the neon bubble letters of the 80s. Even Google and Coca Cola need to update their iconic wordmarks to stay fresh.
- Your company name is really long.
3. Monogram logos
Why should you choose a monogram?
- You want the tie between your name and visual identity, but have a really long name.
- You work in an industry where shortening your name to initials is common (looking at you, law firms!)
Why might you avoid a monogram?
- You’re a new company and aren’t yet established. In this case you can still use a letter-form, but may wish to include your full name below until you develop a reputation.
4. Brand marks
Why should you choose a pictorial mark?
- Your brand name lends itself to be being drawn literally. The Apple logo, for example, is a clear example of a brand name being drawn literally. It makes more sense for their brand to use a pictorial mark than a wordmark or emblem.
- You want to create a sense of brand personality with an image that you wouldn’t otherwise be able to with just your name.
Why might you avoid a pictorial mark?
- You want to be seen as traditional and serious. It’s not impossible to use a pictorial mark if you do, but selecting the right image is more of a challenge.
- You’re still nailing down your product or service. Picking an image too early could lock you into a particular way of branding your company. You may want to start with something more versatile and adapt a brandmark at a later date.
5. Abstract logo marks
Why should you choose an abstract mark?
- You want a pictorial element to your logo, but want to create a more serious tone than most literal pictorial logos create.
- You want something truly unique.
Why might you avoid an abstract mark?
- You haven’t totally solidified your brand identity. Since abstract marks convey feelings, you need to know what kind of emotions you’re trying to create in your customers before developing imagery that does that.
6. Combination marks
Why should you choose a combination mark?
- You want the best of several worlds.
- You want a future-proof logo that can adapt and change with your business.
Why might you avoid a combination mark?
- Your brand is focused on simplicity; combination marks can get busy and be more complicated to use. (Do you put the whole logo on your business card or just the wordmark? Where is it appropriate to use your mascot vs. monogram? etc.)
The one hard and fast rule of logo design is that there are no hard and fast rules in logo design. Hopefully the above examples give you an idea of the advantages and disadvantages of each type of logo, but each and every brand is different. I’ve seen serious financial brands rock a mascot, and children’s clothing companies totally make a sophisticated logotype work. With design, it’s all about the details and the execution. Remember: getting a logo is one of the most fun parts of starting a business. Look at lots of pretty pictures. Let your creativity go crazy. Always get a second (and third and fourth) opinion before finalizing everything. And get excited to see your brand really come to life!