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Essential Principles for Remarkable Logo Design

What do golden arches, a rainbow-colored apple, and a black swoosh have in common? They’re all such powerful logos that we can identify them through just a few descriptive words – without even seeing them!

To help you create a logo that is this successful and memorable, we’ve put together these essential principles for remarkable logo design.

1. Let your logo design speak for itself.

Logo designs should be strong enough to stand on their own even when important brand elements are removed. Whether it’s a color, a shape, or a mascot, your logo should be recognizable even when it doesn’t appear next to a brand name.

For example, the Target brand name often accompanies the store’s red, circular logo. However, the brand mark is so ubiquitous that it can appear virtually anywhere and it is still explicitly identifiable. Starbucks is another brand whose logo is instantly recognizable even when its brand name is stripped away.

2. A strong logo is a versatile logo.

No matter what product you sell, it’s important that your logo is responsive to different contexts. That means that it should look good in all colors and be digitally responsive.

Slack, the popular work chat app, is a prime example of how a logo can be unique, colorful and versatile all at the same time. Although their logo uses multiple different colors, their Brand Guidelines page offers monochrome black and white versions of the same mark. These different versions make it easy for the Slack logo to displayed on a colored background while still remaining identifiable and on-brand.

3. Keep it Simple and Straightforward.

According to a recent study by DesignBuddy, 95% of the world’s top brand logos are comprised of only one or two colors. This proves that when it comes to logo design, simplicity is more important than complexity.

Take the Nike logo, for example. The Nike swish can be easily transformed into different mediums like apparel and sports gear, and it can be digitally adapted to different colors.

4. Keep the past, present and future in mind.

We’ve already written about how to make your logo last over time, and we’re writing about it again because it’s one of the most important factors to consider in logo design. Logos that follow today’s minimalist trend are in luck because the simple, evergreen nature of this popular style lends itself well to versatility over time.

Levi’s is one brand that has continued to remain relevant. Although Levi’s has adapted and changed their logo throughout the years, they have remained consistent with their double-curved insignia – a design which also appears on their jeans’ pockets. This symbol serves as a subconscious reminder of the brand’s integrity and history.

5. Align your design with your brand values.

In addition to things like shape, size and font, color is an incredibly important factor when considering the relationship between a logo and the brand values it is intended to represent. This logo color chart demonstrates how different colors can guide consumer’s purchasing behavior habits.

Note that the color black is often used to promote luxury products, and the color yellow is youthful and attention-grabbing. Choosing the right color for your logo will influence how people perceive and are influenced by your brand.

Whether your brand is fresh on the market or celebrating its centennial year, your logo is core to the way your brand is seen out in the world. As long as you follow these key principles, you’ll be well on your way to designing a remarkable logo.

Michelle Polizzi is the Content Coordinator at Brandfolder, a user-friendly tool for brand asset management. When she’s not busy creating content, you can find her bicycling around Denver or catching a live concert. She’d love to connect with you on LinkedIn.