You have probably heard an ancient proverb claiming that “a picture is worth a thousand words.” That claim is largely true. Being visual creatures, humans are able to identify images for as little as 13 milliseconds, and unlike other species roaming the Earth, they can associate the visual information with various abstract meanings. As you can probably guess, this little bit of trivia was duly noted by the ever-competitive world of business. That brings us to the question of company logos as well as the importance of company logo our first introduction to a new company. Let’s take a look at just how powerful these images can be in building the company’s brand and the messages their authors are able to convey to the audience in just 13 milliseconds.
For all intents and purposes, the logo represents the face of an otherwise faceless company. And much like we can read a lot from a person’s face during the first meeting and base our further interaction on this first impression, company logo essentially serves the same purpose. If designed well, a logo should incite the interest for further interaction. Taking into account a very competitive playing field in which the businesses work today, efficiently communicating the ownership over certain niche through imagery becomes an imperative and logo makes the basis for this effort.
The amount of information we are exposed to every day can cause a true sensory overload. It is really no wonder that the attention span has shrunk as much as 50% over the past decade. That puts additional pressure on a company’s logo. Its purpose goes way beyond leaving a positive impression and transcends to capturing the customers’ attention and even using visual imagery to successfully communicate the company’s values and brand message.
Once the companies come up with a functional logo the said logo can be used as a branding foundation. If pulled off right this synergy creates uniformity and reinforces the brand identity throughout all levels of the companies. Take for example the Apple logo. It is very simple and clean-cut. This philosophy spills over to the company’s products (both visually and functionally), selling points and even premises. The produced uniformity makes the company appear powerful, consistent and trustworthy.
If we are to further lean into the power of visual communication, we can observe that humans are much more capable to remember images than written information. It is no wonder then that, before engaging in business card printing, most of the newly founded, trendy companies decide to make the logo the center of attention. To put it simply, if the logo is designed well the person that received the card will be able to keep the presented information in memory much longer than if the information has been presented textually and the imagery kept in the background.
We can call this phenomenon “professionalism by association.” Essentially, if you are willing to go the distance and invest enough money to get a professional looking logo, your company will create an overall impression of trustworthiness and professionalism. This dynamic works both ways. If you make something as basic as the logo looks sloppy and undercooked, you won’t be expected to show any level of competency in any kind of business interaction. Of course, the rule has a fair share of exceptions, but it should be, nevertheless, taken into serious consideration.
This angle comes especially relevant in the context of small businesses that are operating in highly competitive environments. With no resources to make their brands household names and communicate the unique brand aspects through traditional marketing channels, businesses need to rely on simple means to achieve higher goals. And, as we’ve previously established visual imagery goes as basic as it gets. So, when faced with multiple brand choices and without extensive knowledge on the said companies, the customers will naturally gravitate more toward the ones with more compelling visual presentation.
Finally, we have to point out that humans are not only visual but also highly irrational beings. They grow emotionally attached to intangible things like images and symbols. Here lies one of the greatest strengths of company logos – if they are appealing enough, people will develop an emotional attachment to them and develop brand loyalty even when it is against their better judgment. Of course, this practice should be looked at as an exception and strong brands will always be marked by consistency rather than visual appeal. But, it is hard to deny that appealing imagery lies in the foundation of brand loyalty.
We hope these few considerations have illustrated the importance of developing an appealing and functional company logo. In spite of all the different ways of communication we have developed over the previous centuries, simple images still represent the most efficient way of translating ideas across the language barriers. Keep this in mind when laying the foundations to your company’s brand.