Apple, the Brand: A Case Study in Logo Design
A plain, silver, apple with a bite on its right side. Just the textual description of this very distinctive icon alone is enough to let people know that a particular gadget is of excellent quality.
And yes, we are talking about Apple, the company founded by tech visionary Steve Jobs, and the same company behind globally popular gadgets like the MacBook, iPod, iPad, and iPhone. Its logo sums up all the qualities that the company has been known for throughout the years: simplicity, ease-of-use, user-friendliness, and top-of-the-line quality.
The Importance of a Great Logo
Like what we’ve seen in Apple, the logo serves as an anchor for a company’s overall brand and public image. It is the face of the company. It is the graphical representation of all the things that the business stands for. Since logos are featured prominently on advertisements, websites, letterheads, and other marketing mediums, they usually set the tone and design for other aspects of a business’s branding efforts (e.g. design choices for fonts, website layout, advertisements, etcetera).
What Makes an Awesome Logo
Not all logo designs are made the same. There are good logos, and there are GREAT logo designs. These are the logos and icons that have already imprinted themselves on people’s minds. The characteristics listed below sums up the qualities that are usually found in most of the logos that are well-recognized by people from around the globe:
Apple’s gray apple. Nike’s swoosh mark. Twitter’s bird icon. There’s a reason why these logos are very effective- they are distinctively simple. The strongest logos are usually those with the fewest elements. Remember, too much of something will distract people from the core message of a logo. It’s best to settle for simple shapes and outlines that a lot of people can recognize, instead of relying on fancy, complicated, graphics.
As much as possible, don’t conform to industry tradition. A dentist’s office might be forced to design a logo with smiling mouths or teeth just to conform to people’s expectations. But the problem with this is that there is no originality there whatsoever. People searching for a dentist’s office on the Web will just see logo after logo of smiles and teeth. Your logo should be able to stand out and be memorable, and not get lost amidst the sameness of the crowd.
To prevent yourself from designing a wholly unoriginal logo, do a quick search of businesses in your industry and avoid mimicking their designs and patterns. Always strive to be different.
A great logo follows basic design principles. It looks balanced, well-proportioned. All of its visual elements should complement each other. For example, if your logo is quite playful, then don’t use a serious-looking font with it.
Apple’s logo pretty much exemplifies versatility. You can put it on anything, and it wouldn’t look out of place. Your logo should be versatile enough so that it can be used in a wide variety of contexts and materials (e.g. on t-shirts, caps, mugs, newsletters).
A good logo design is one that is easily recognizable throughout the years. The logos of Apple, Coca-Cola, and Starbucks have undergone a few facelifts in their time, but the sense and integrity of their original logos have not been lost in their present-day iterations. Drastically changing logos is actually bad for a company’s branding efforts, and it is actually in their best interests that they keep a present logo for as long as they can.
Logos are not just things that you would stick on to a letterhead just to make it pretty. They form an indelible part of a company’s public image. The characteristics listed above should give you enough guidelines on how to make your logo work stand out from the rest of the pack. For free logos visit this page.