There is a widespread belief among company bigwigs that a corporate log has to tell the story of the business. In fact, this is as far from the truth as can be. A logo is simply an identifiable mark, albeit one that customer’s associate with the company concerned. Let’s talk about logos, what they represent, and what is important when considering yours.
Labeling a Product
So what is a logo if not a storyteller? It’s a brand identifier, one that appeals to the customer as they know what it represents: you, and your product or service. Think about what happens when you go shopping: you know what you want and, somewhat subconsciously, you know what logo represents each individual product within its class. A good logo will naturally be more noticeable than a poor one; hence it will achieve more sales. The shopper often identifies products by logo, rather than name, hence the appeal of the logo is essential to the success of the product. There is no background story: it’s just part of the many aspects of attracting a customer to your product.
It’s not enough, however, to have a great logo; what if a customer has a poor experience with a company? They will associate that brand with that experience, and perhaps try a competitor. This is why you need to make sure your brand reputation is backed up by a consistently acceptable customer experience. Some companies go through hard times; it’s not unusual for customers to enjoy many years of great service by a certain company, only to find things going downhill at some point. Often this comes with expansion, when a company bites off more than it can chew. What happens when a customer finds the brand experience becoming less satisfactory? They go elsewhere, and look for another supplier. However, it is worth bearing in mind that the unsatisfied customer will still remember the company logo. That’s why experience counts, and why you must make sure your brand reputation is monitored at all times.
Dealing with Growth
As we have seen, there are some who believe the logo itself is the sole representation of the brand; in other words, a logo should physically and actually represent the product or service that a brand provides. This is all very well in the first instance, but what happens when you grow as a business and perhaps begin to offer alternative products to those you were first known for? Retail outlets are a good example: you may sell shoes at first, and have a nice shoe shaped logo, but what if you move into clothing, or start offering other accessories that begin to sell well? You don’t want to have to rebrand – it’s expensive and confusing for your customers – so you need to make sure your logo, initially, is recognizable as yours, but not instantly linked to a product or service. Your logo is not marketing a product; it’s marketing you, your company. Simple, quick and memorable is the key to a great logo.
A logo is important in many ways, yet it is not an identifier of your company’s ability; it is simply there to attract attention from customers who have found that you give them what they need, and others who want to try it out. Do not rely on it to sell things for you – that’s for you and your marketing team to do.