Having a quality Corporate Identity (Commonly referred to as a “logo”) is the critical first step in building a business!
What makes a great corporate Identity? (What makes a great logo?)
Your corporate Identity must have several characteristics to make it “great.”
First and foremost your logo must be relatively simple. A logo needs to be instantly recognizable at great distances or when printed at very small sizes. Often times we will have clients request extremely complex logos. These complex logos do accomplish one of our goals of a great logo; they further the brand by communicating a message. Unfortunately that message is only delivered to the customer successfully when they have the time and proximity to take in all the details of the art. A complex logo looses it’s effectiveness on a billboard when a potential customer has only a moment to glance up at your logo. Something too complex may look like nothing more than a blob of color to a passing driver. My all-time favorite example of a great “simple” logo is the Nike swoosh. One single, solid shape that represents movement. The Nike swoosh is a great logo. Keep this in mind when considering your logo.
The second characteristic to a great corporate identity is that the company name is clear and easy to read. Once again – this goes back to functionality. What good is a fancy artistic font if nobody can even read your company name. Typically a good font is both easy to read and has enough artistic qualities that is clear and helps brand the company.
A quick side note on naming your company; there is a trend currently to give your company a quarky and peculiar name like “Yahoo” or “Google.” While these particular names are good in two regards: they are short and unique, unfortunately they communicate nothing about what the company does or sells. This is fine as long as you have multi-million dollar marketing budget to communicate your company products to your customers. Most small businesses do not have that type of budget. Every interaction your customers have with your corporate identity needs to quickly and intuitively tell them who you are and what you’re selling. The name “Pan Pizza” for instance is going to be a more effective name for a pizza shop than “Hooligans.”
The final characteristic of a great Corporate Identity is that it furthers the brand by communicating a message. For this example I will use the Big Ten logo as an example. For those of you unfamiliar with the Big Ten, it is a college football division. Now obviously anyone who heard the name Big Ten would probably assume that there were ten teams playing in this football division. But there are in fact eleven teams in the division. If you look at the negative space on both sides of the T, you will see the number eleven. This particular bit of communication does not help sell the Big Ten, butyou can see how a logo can act as a communication device. A great corporate identity communicates a message to the client that furthers the company brand.
Why Do you need a corporate Identity?
Your Corporate Identity is the design foundation for all your marketing. A high quality corporate image gives your customers confidence in you as a professional business. It makes your company memorable and builds brand recognition. These are all keys to building brand loyalty and repeat sales!
Your Corporate Identity also establishes a system of standards on which all of your marketing and design is based. Through the creation of your corporate identity you will establish your fonts, color schemes and design motifs. These standards will help establish a consistent look throughout your materials.