Your logo: it’s single most important job is to represent your business. To that end, it’s the anchoring identifier of your organization. If it’s well-designed, it will be memorable and one of the first things that come to mind when someone thinks of your business. Over time, your customers will come to attach meaning to it through their interactions with your people, products and services.
So why on earth would you ever consider changing it? Not to mention, logo updates are often costly and time-consuming. While all this may be true, there are times when revisiting your logo is a necessity.
We’ve listed a few of those reasons below.
Your logo looks dated
Design norms change over time and in order to stay relevant so should your corporate identity. That doesn’t mean you need to react to every design trend; but certain styles—including fonts, shapes and techniques—come to be associated with certain eras.
Take Google Chrome for example. When it first launched in 2008 it was with the 3D logo shown below at left. By 2012 skeuomorphic design—objects that mimic their real-world counterparts—started to go by the wayside to be replaced by a flatter rendering style. Google Chrome has advanced it’s logo several times to present day (shown below at right), to a 2D style that’s more inline with modern sensibilities and denotes a company that stays on the cutting edge of technology.
Your logo no longer represents what you do
Has your company recently had a shift in direction and now offers a different array of products or services. Or perhaps your organization has experienced a rebirth such as a merger or rapid growth. In such instances, it’s important to revisit your brand to ensure it still accurately reflects what you do.
Consider the popular coffee and baked good eatery, Dunkin Donuts. When it first launched in 1948 it only offered donuts and coffee. In the years since it has expanded its offerings to include a wide variety of food and beverage options. And in 2018 it unveiled new branding which included dropping the word “Donuts” from it’s name to be called “Dunkin’” and updating it’s logo.
The updated branding reflects the company’s journey from a donut shop to a beverage-led, on-the-go brand. “By simplifying and modernizing our name, while still paying homage to our heritage, we have an opportunity to create an incredible new energy for Dunkin’…” said Tony Weisman, Chief Marketing Officer, Dunkin’ US, in a press release announcing the change.
Your company has matured but your logo hasn’t
It’s not unusual for a start-up company to hastily create a logo due to short deadlines and limited resources. Such was the case with Airbnb’s original logo.
Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky and co-founder Joe Gebbia said the following of the company’s previous logos: “We were growing so fast, it became one of those things where you say you’ll figure it out later, but then you never end up doing it because you’re too busy.”
Four years ago, the company launched a major rebrand, and reshaped their mission around the notion of hospitality that included “belonging”. With it’s new purpose came a logo that was a total departure from their original logo and conveyed this concept thru it’s casually shaped “A” that also invokes a heart and destination point on a map. It’s color changed too from a cool blue to a warmer, friendlier Sunset Orange hue.
Your logo is too complex
Years ago logos appeared mainly in print, on signage and in-store displays. Nowadays, however, logos are all over the Internet and we view them on devices as small as our smartphones. For this reason, too much complexity in a logo design can be problematic.
Take a look below at how the Starbucks Coffee logo has changed over time. Although they have remained true to their stylized mermaid or siren, it has been redrawn—each time simpler—to present day (far right). Even the company name has been dropped from their logomark.
So, still considering changing your logo? While it’s not a step to be taken lightly, there’s definitely comes a time and place when it makes sense to do so.
By Donna DeLeo, ETMG Graphic Designer