Does Your Logo Meet These 5 Standards of a Good Logo?
You don’t have to be a design professional to recognize a bad logo when you see one. Chances are, you’ve seen plenty of logos that look boring, outdated, or just “off”–even if you can’t put your finger on specifically what’s “wrong” with it. It’s easy to be critical of logos out in the wild, but when it comes to your own logo, you tend to be a bit biased. Look at your logo from an objective point of view to determine whether it meets these widely agreed upon “good logo” standards. Here are five characteristics of a good logo:
1. Intriguing – Above all things, a good logo must attract attention and pique interest right away. There’s nothing worse for a business owner than having a boring logo that gets passed right over. It’s simple: if your logo is boring, then it’s forgettable–and no one likes forgettable. The best way to create an intriguing logo is to include some sort of hidden imagery within the design. Take the Tour de France logo below, for example. At first glance, the irregularly drawn lines and yellow circle catch your attention. But after a few seconds, you start to notice the hidden cyclist on his bike.
2. Simple – A good logo is almost always simple in design. If you can’t replicate your own logo in under 30 seconds with a pen and pad of paper, it might be too complex. Small details are usually lost, but people should be able to recall the basic shapes, colors, and form of your logo to a reasonable degree. Strong logo recall is a telltale sign of an impactful brand, and a simple logo makes this all the easier. A great example of a simple logo design is Nike’s time-honored swoosh. The logo itself is only made up of one simple, easily recognizable shape. Not only is it extremely versatile, but it scales up and down nicely, too, with no loss of detail.
3. Meaningful – An overly generic logo isn’t going to cut it when it comes to standing out from competitors. If your logo looks like it was purchased from a logo template site, chances are, people can tell. Your logo should speak to who you are and convey the right message for your brand. Symbolic imagery is one way designers create custom logos that tell your unique story. In short, a good logo just makes sense for your brand. This Baskin Robbins logo is meaningful to the brand because it contains the number 31–exactly the number of ice cream flavors they offer.
4. Memorable and Unique – A good logo is memorable in that it won’t get lost in the crowd. With a custom logo, you’re guaranteed to have a unique design that you won’t find elsewhere. The much-loved Starbucks logo is a frequent subject of logo design debate, because it seems to break all logo ‘rules,’ yet it’s been undeniably successful in building their brand. That’s because it’s memorable and unique to the brand–not something you’d find on a logo template site! (Also, the history behind the logo is pretty cool, too.)
5. Timeless – Perhaps the hardest to achieve is a logo that’s as relevant as it is timeless. A good logo can achieve both, whether because of its simplicity, ubiquitous symbolism, color palette, or a combination of the three. Usually, a good logo focuses less on stylistic elements, trendy fonts, and bright colors, and instead opts for a more versatile, neutral, and, again–simple–style. One of the best examples of a timeless logo is Apple’s iconic fruit silhouette. Through the years, the brand has been able to make the shift from Macintosh’s rainbow-laden apple, to the simple, sleek design we know today.
If your logo falls short on one or more of these categories, it’s probably time to consider a logo refresh. Even a slight change in colors, fonts, or imagery can take your outdated logo to a new level. Contact Social Fire Media today for a free consultation on logo design, or learn more about custom logo design here.