In a more accustomed manner, logo is nothing but colossally a silhouette of its owners. It carries a personality of the brand that it stands for. So basically, psychology behind logo design is the study of interpreting the meaning of logo – a meaning that goes far beyond the mere naming of logo. It involves understanding all that the company wants to make their customers interpret about themselves.
A logo typically constitutes two components – Tangible and Intangibles. The former includes the typography, fonts, styles, palettes. These are pretty much visually present and acknowledged. Whereas the intangibles are tricky to be managed. They convey themselves out of the tangible ones, hence portraying the tangibles ones in an articulate manner becomes more salient. Below in the article we will be describing some logo elements and their effect on human behavior.
“A logo doesn’t sell (directly), it identifies.” – Paul Rand
A logo shape is fundamental in the process of building a logo. Psychologically, our brains are conditioned in a manner that we pick up shapes with absolute ease. They hold color and typography together and aid in making the logo look at its best. Each shape has a distinct feature attached to it and hence signify a different meaning.
- Circles : Circles or Rings portray being perpetuity. The continuity factor is drawn majorly from planets or the sun. They suggest power – as they are bereaved of any ends and have the freedom to move without any inhibition. Also as they symbolize something which is complete, an attribution of collaborative fulfillment is heavily reflected in rings and circles.
- Quadrilaterals : Squares, Rectangles or Diamonds stipulate strength, reliability and a systematic organization – drawing form the brick foundation. Also a varied feature of safety is attached to these figures extrapolated from boxes, rooms and safes. These display professionalism and confidence in the brand. One tricky point on quadrilaterals that we cannot miss noting is their crafty nature. Although considered as solid forms but if placed inappropriately, it can firmly render being instable.
- Triangles : Triangles on the other hand are considered to have a spiritual representation of connecting body, mind and spirit. It combines the order of squares and venture of the angles and its tilted shape. A triangle depicts stability when placed with its base and instability when inverted. Thus handle these shapes with care!
- Lines : Horizontal lines display a tranquil and peaceful nature of the brand – extracting from the earth’s horizon. It is considered to have softness and is often associated with feminine brands. Vertical lines in contrast display aggression and power. They are inclined more towards the masculine nature of the brand.
- Lively Shapes : Organic shapes are used to have a clear indication of the brand characteristic. Something as Panther drawn on the logo of Puma – to show swiftness that the shoe avails users with.
A logo tint is the first thing that viewers capture. They have a very strong psychic association and hence a very prompt recall memory. Majority of the times, logos are identified with their colors. A perfect color palette usage is of utmost importance given that it speaks the most of your brand.
Blue represents trust, peace and compassion. Red evolves round anger, excitement, love and warmth wherein Green is a characterization of something that is knowledgeable. BRG are the primary colors – a palette that takes upon majority of shade in Google’s logo. A yellow tint to have a secondary shade to the logo was added just to symbolize that Google does not follow rules, it is unique and plays by its own rules. Also the other reason of adding yellow was it being referred to as something that is cheerful and adventurous – All the more reason to have yellow on the table.
Another palette that is worth to talk about is of black and white. The combination is a representation of maturity, of being veterans in their fields. Adidas has got it on point. The logo showcases sophistication of the label and hence gives it an exclusive touch! Another interpretation of monochrome logos would be the transparency the brands depict. There is either black or white – no greys in between!
The other important aspect that we have to consider while choosing colors is that of the culture in which it would be placed. Red on a dating site represents love and romance. While the same in food industry might replicate being something that is chilly and spicy or that which excites hunger. (tinder v/s burger king/mcd)
The font of the logo is directly in relation to the shape in which we have to fit the text. Thus a proper aligned logo without a well thought of typography would be a huge disaster. For basics, the two prime categories of logos would be Serif and Sans Serif! The former has decorative – curvy ends to the text whereas the latter are devoid of curved strokes. Serif are taken as conventional font types – that which gives the text a more comforting touch. Wherein sans serif are more clean and modern font types. They are imbibed with a sense of discipline and hence comes along the boldness of the typeface.
Choose your typeface as per your brand. A café would require a playful font such as Mona or Hamburger type. While for a professional service firm a Helvetica or Arial works best.
A logo is perpetual element. We do not change it quite often and hence while designing them we have to think of its likeability at couple of years down the line. It is widely understood that a logo should depict these five things out of their appearance: Simple, Memorable, Versatile, Relevant, and Resizable. These are the outcomes that we expect from a logo, which can be accomplished only if we put the right shape, color and font together. Design the logo that communicates the correct Brand Message!