What is the difference between a logo and a brand?
If you have been in business for a while, you probably have a logo and maybe even some brand colours. But what is the difference between a logo and a brand? And how to you get from one to the other? We know that this is a rather abstract question so we thought we would make it easier with a concrete checklist and some exciting tips for how to think creatively about your company logo.
1. Brand colours
Few things are so easy to change and yet so important for the impression of your company as your brand colours. It might seem trivial but as many have noticed, the right colour palette can help bring excitement, trust and even a feeling of innovation to your branding. The easiest way to get it right is to look at what interior designers do: pick one main colour and a few supporting ones.Try to keep them all in the same family, for example all neon or all pastels. This means that they will give the same feeling to the viewer such as excitement or luxury. You can see this in the example below:
In general, you want to keep your core colours for places that will stay the same for a long time like your website but you can be more free to experiment in places like campaigns or packaging. This means that you can use shades of your brand colours and other colours that go in the same tone for more temporary marketing material.
Some companies like 23andme have built their brand image on diversity and reflect this by almost always using multiple colours.
There is a veritable sea of fonts out there, from traditional Times New Roman to fonts that look like objects or characters, it is easy to get lost. Try to pick one which reflects your company image and stick with it. The confusion generally starts when you jump on the “trendy font” wagon. For a more traditional company, a serif font usually works better while sans serif fonts work well for new companies or businesses who want to look more innovative and modern. The image below shows an example of each, serifs are the little extra pieces added to the edges of letters.
It is common to use two fonts, one for your headings and one for your main text. There are a number of good sites that can help you find font combinations that work together. Two great starting points are fontpair and creative bloq.
What better way to say something quickly than an icon? For social media, on your website and even on your business cards, do not settle for a mismatch of clipart, make sure your icons match and that they look like they belong together with your logo. If you have a very delicate logo, choose a style that is not too heavy and vice versa. Yules injected more personality in to their messaging with friendly icons.
4. Photography and illustrations
Let’s face it, we are all past the “people smiling at salad” photos. Nothing can replace custom photography of your actual customers, products and amazing employees but there are stock sites that specialise in more realistic imagery. As with the previous tips, consistency is key. Ideally, try to find or create photographs that follow your brand colours and that reflect your values. Try and picture your customers. Where do they live? Where do they spend their vacation and what will they cook for dinner? All this can create photography that speaks to those who matter to you, because that is more important than just a pretty picture. The example below shows two images that look like they belong to the same company and two that would not fit in to give you a better idea of what we mean. Look at how the colours and lighting is consistent in the two top ones and different in the bottom ones.
Sometimes, a photo can not explain everything and illustrations are a better way to go. With infographics especially, your company can become known for being helpful which is always the holy grail of customer service. The same tips apply here as with icons, find a consistent illustration style and make sure to stick to colours that work with your brand.
5. Make your logo dynamic
This is the truly fun and unexplored part that few companies get to. This is why it is so powerful. A dynamic logo means that it can change depending on the situation while still looking like the same company. One of our favourite examples of this is the logo for Sustain where the core logo is the company name and the shape changes depending on their branch (below). Another great example is UK City of Culture who use different patterns while the shape stays the same. This way, you can have a lot of fun with your logo while still staying consistent.
Do you have any tips for making your brand memorable or do you have a question you would like answered in our next blogpost? We would love to hear them. Send us a message here
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