7 logotypes: A logo is not just a logo! Choosing a logo shouldn’t be random: there are certain logos. A logo is not just a logo! The selection of a logo should not be made by chance: Specific requirements favor some logo designs or exclude them from the outset. The design experts at 99designs, an online marketplace for graphic design, explain which logotype suits which company.
7 logotypes: Monogram Logos (Lettercards)
7 logotypes: IBM, HBO and RTL are just a few examples of companies that have taken advantage of the abbreviation of a long company name by using it for brand identification. Since only a few letters stand for an entire company, it is essential to choose a font that presents the company and is also very legible at the same time – even if it is significantly reduced in size for a business card, for example. As a young company whose name is still largely unknown, one should write the full name under the abbreviation to promote the branding.
Company Logotype (Wordmarks)
In this case, the complete company name serves as the logo. Companies with short phrases such as Google or Visa prefer this type of presentation. You benefit from the fact that the name is easy to remember with the target group. If typography optimally conveys the company’s core message, the perfect basis for high recognition is given.
Logo Symbols (Figurative Marks)
Figurative marks are what you first think of when you hear the term logo: a symbol or a graphic-based design. Examples of this are, for example, the “bitten” Apple apple or the twittering Twitter bird – these symbols represent the company. One look is enough to be able to assign the respective picture to a company. A real figurative mark should also work without explanatory lettering, making it a problematic logotype, especially for young companies. If you still have the courage, you should think of the broader meaning of the picture: Should you play with your name ? Should a deeper meaning be conveyed ? Should emotion be evoked ?
Abstract logos are a particular form of symbolic mark. The striped Adidas flower, the split Pepsi circle or the star-shaped BP logo are among the most prominent examples in this category. In contrast to the classic figurative mark, you can create something unique that becomes a symbol for the brand. Cultural meanings or influences are irrelevant. Just as a young company can be charged with its ideas and ideals, a logo can be created in the same way.
The mascot is usually a brightly clouded funny character that becomes a brand ambassador. A famous example is Colonel Harland D. Sanders, who smiles at fast-food fans from the KFC logo. This logotype is mainly used when companies create a pleasant atmosphere and families and children belong to the target group.
The Combination Logo
As the name suggests, this combination of a wordmark or lettercard logo and a figurative mark, abstract logo or mascot—text and image work together, strengthening the brand. Advantageously, the word and the symbolic mark can be used separately as the company becomes more well-known without impairing recognizability. For example, the crocodile on a polo shirt can be assigned to the Lacoste brand without the name appearing underneath. In addition, combinations can be better protected because together, they represent a unique picture.
Badges, seals and coats of arms are classic examples of an emblem. What they all have in common is that they consist of a symbol with images and text. In this way, they give a traditional impression and are often the first choice for schools, authorities and organizations. Despite the classic style, companies like Starbucks or Harley-Davidson manage to give their emblems a contemporary look. If an emblem is chosen as the corporate logo, one should be aware that it may not be suitable for all branding materials: On business cards, it could be too small and therefore illegible. An emblem may also be lost on hats or shirts, which is why you should pay particular attention to simplicity in the design to achieve a clear, meaningful look.