What is a Logo?

A logo is an identifier. A logo is analogous to the features of the face. We identify and remember people by their look: Alice has sultry eyes and puffy lips or John has slick black hair and thick black glasses. A logo should accomplish the same instant recognition for a business: Nike’s has a swoosh and McDonald’s has the yellow arches. Some clients fall into the trap of wanting their logo to explain the business.

While the logo should be relevant to the business it’s identifying, a logo that tries too hard usually ends up too complicated and overwhelming. Rather than trying to explain what the company does—Nike doesn’t have shoes in their logo, McDonald’s doesn’t have hamburgers in theirs—good logos simply and effectively identify the business.

When evaluating your logo or considering a new design, aim for a simple, appropriate and distinct mark that will make a lasting impression.