Effective Company Logos and Why They Work

Your logo can speak volumes.

We’ve discussed how consumers are inundated with thousands of marketing messages. We’ve outlined the process of logo development, rebranding and general branding guidelines. Now, we’re going to look at a couple of company logos that have championed these concepts, creating inspiration-worthy branding.

King Dough Pizza – Bloomington, IN

Designed by Zach Graham

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There are several reasons why this logo is worth writing home about. To start, their name is clever and rich with creative possibilities. (Pro Tip: If you’re in the naming stage, think beyond the moniker and consider the creative options it presents. Envision it plastered all over your products, painted on walls or embossed on business card. The better your name, the more creative avenues you can explore.)

The balance of this design is, as the youths say, “on fleek” because you can separate the copy & graphic elements and still have  strong graphics that advocate the branding. They fit together like pieces of a puzzle. A beautifully branded pizza-puzzle.

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As for color and type, they’ve done their homework. This rich, primary color palette paired with bold, loud and stylized font communicates  a brand that’s confident, handmade and energetic. Plus, the “psychology qualities of red …triggers stimulation, appetite and hunger…yellow triggers the feelings of happiness and friendliness.” (Source: Karen Haller). The psychological elements are perfectly aligned for a fast casual pizzeria and its customers.

I also want to talk about the textures at play here. They’re subtle, but dynamic. We have a combination of grunge and halftones.  These simple elements really elevate the design. It just wouldn’t be the same if it were flat and straight-lined with solid shapes.

There’s a holistic nature about this brand – everything works together. The colors compliment one another, the typography has personality and the textures tie it all together. When you’re crafting your logo, consider this type of holistic approach.


Designed by Pentagram partners Michael Bierut and Luke Hayman

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The new & improved MasterCard branding is a true thing of beauty. Not only is it a prime example of successful rebranding on a global scale, (Flashback: “Rebranding Your Business”) but it also champions strong elements of design. First, the infamous “before and after” shot:

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This updated branding is so successful because it maintains the iconic style, established in 1968, but appeals to a contemporary, digital audience with its vivid color, simplicity and seamless design. Their logo translates on print, digital, packaging and against both light and dark backgrounds. The type expertly aligns with the circles above and gives the entire design a satisfying weight.

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As one of the most recognizable logos worldwide (which currently exists on over two billion plastic cards, ads, ATMS, etc.) Mastercard has become synonymous with banking. Their unique challenge was to modernize the design without losing the brand’s consistency. By starting with the original concept and fine-tuning various elements, the new logo is softer and more approachable. This challenges the antiquated, formal nature of banking, bringing the branding into the modern, digital age.

I would be remiss to not comment on the brilliant use of color theory. The “combination aims to cement an idea of ‘connectivity’ and ‘seamlessness’, one of Mastercard’s main brand messages. The translucency of the central orange colour also aims to reflect a sense of ‘transparency’,” says Pentagram, “while all three colours are now lighter and brighter to convey ‘optimism’.” (Source: Design Week).

Local vs. Global

Wether you’re a local startup, national or global brand there is a lot to be learned from these company logos. The most powerful designs make consumers do a double-take. Brand standards should reach every nook & cranny of your marketing messages to create a unified, unique aesthetic. Colors, fonts and icons should be purposefully chosen and crafted so they appeal to your brand’s audience. The personality of your logo should be championed through company culture.

Your branding is more than a logo, it’s who you & why you do what you do – in a nice, tidy graphic. Use these brands as inspiration and get to work.

Need a logo? 

Whether you’ve just started your business or want to revamp your existing image, a defined identity and unique branding will give you the extra edge and make the right impression. Road Warrior Creative provides unique, professional logos that stand out from the crowd and represent where your business is going. Need a full corporate identity to tell your story and turn your business into a brand? Our packages include supporting elements to ensure your brand has a cohesive appearance from business cards and letterhead, to social media and print marketing materials.

Thoughts or Questions?

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