What a logo is not.

18:37 Monday May 19, 2014

by Terrence Bull

What can we learn about logos from the
largest company in the world.

As branding specialists, we have designed the branding for thousands of companies over the years - integral to that is the logo design. A lesson I have to give every time is “What a logo is not”. So here it is:

Take a look at the Apple Computer Inc. logo - which is one of the most famous in the world.

There are some things that are NOT there.

Before you read on, can you guess what they are?

  • There is no company name.
  • There is no color. i.e. it can be replicated in any size, in any medium (color or black and white) and still be easily identified. NOTE: this does not mean you do not put color into your logo, but it needs to be able to work without color as well as with color.
  • There are no fine lines - or it is not a pretty picture. Again, this means it can be shrunk down to only a few pixels wide and still be visible (see if you can recognize this little black dot – see below).

  • There is no slogan.
  • Both the company name and the logo do not tell you what the company does. i.e. what does an apple have to do with computers?

What it is, is unique. After all, what use is a brand that is simply a copy of someone else’s or a common everyday symbol - e.g. for New Zealand companies, a Silver Fern; for US companies, the American Flag; for African companies, a picture of Africa or an Elephant. A brand is designed to make you stand out from the crowd - not blend in with everyone else.

After designing thousands of logos, I can say they are both the hardest and easiest things to design - i.e. easy for me to design, yet hard to get the client to understand what it needs to be and agree with that design.

Source: Dream: Profound Insights For Creating Business Success By Terrence Bull


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