Establishing a unique brand identity is about what kind of image you would like to evoke, starting with an original and memorable logo. To find out why logo important and how to create one that best represents your business, let’s rev things up with some inspiration from the world of motoring.
Front and Centre: The Making of Iconic Car Logos
Unless you can recognise brands of vehicle on sight, one of the first things people will look at when trying to identify it is the badge on the front, sometimes known as a hood ornament or mascot.
The first of these (according to author David Corbe) was a sun-crested falcon decorating chariot buried with the Egyptian pharaoh Tutankhamun.The falcon was intended to bring luck – and in the case of these major motoring manufacturers, it appears to have done the same:
- Mercedes Benz – few of us can see this iconic badge without immediately thinking of their 2012 ad featuring Janis Joplin – but this simple design has an equally simple meaning: the intent of Mercedes’ original founder to create vehicles that worked on land, air and sea.
- Alfa Romeo – an intricate logo proudly representing the company’s origins, the Alfa Romeo badge features on one side, a Milanese white and red cross – and on the other, a more unusual mascot: the Biscione – a viper eating a man, based on an old legend from the crusades.
- Vauxhall – another badge rooted in mythology, Vauxhall’s legendary griffin originally appeared on the coat of arms of 13th Century mercenary soldier Sir Falkes de Breauté, who was awarded the Manor of Luton by King John – which later became known as Vauxhall.
Finding Your Logo
To discover what your brand logo is, you first need to carry out research to determine what your target market likes. Is there a sophisticated, luxury aspect to their tastes, or is it something a little more youthful and fun?
Researching successful logos throughout history can also help, as can looking at current trends. It can also help to research market competitors to assess popularity (and to check you’re initiating someone else!)
Your Brand Style
If you’re a business owner trying to establish your brand, getting seen by the right people can be a real challenge. A key aspect of this is your brand identity: what ideas you want your company to embody and who is within your target market.
For inspiration, start with what really matters: your company mission and values. Integrating this into your logo in a symbolic way can help you to design a logo with meaning and purpose.
You can do this in a more direct way – using symbols evoking certain images (stars for success, or powerful animals to show drive and ambition, for example). As we’ve seen, logos can either be beautifully simple or intricate – the choice is up to you.
Alternatively, you can do this in a more abstract manner, for example by using shape and colour: a red triangle suggests dynamism and upward movement – while a blue square might represent calm and dependability.
Why A Logo Is important
By establishing a logo for your company, you’re essentially stamping your mark on it and making it your own. An original, innovative design can pique customer curiosity while making you stand out in a crowded marketplace.
Over time, familiarity with certain logos can help to establish brand loyalty – especially if they’re original and memorable. If you’re a relatively new business, you might not be quite there yet – but it’s quite possible that your logo could be a future classic alongside the likes of the Nike swoosh and the McDonalds double arches.
Incorporating branded merchandise into your marketing plan is a great way to promote your product or service, whether that’s on a promotional tee shirt, a billboard or an online advertisement. While designing your logo, consider this carefully as in general, simple logos tend to work better for this purpose.
Establishing a brand vision is all about expressing the mission aims and values of your company in a compelling way, whether that’s through a canny slogan (“the car in front is a Toyota”; “Honda: the power of dreams” – or through visual messaging such as a logo.
The prospect of competing with so many other businesses might appear somewhat daunting – but with a thoroughly-researched marketing plan and a genuine passion for your product or service, you’ll hold the keys (maybe even with a branded leather loop keyring showing off that great new logo) – to success.