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What’s In A Logo?

I published a funny post about a logo design that was being auctioned off on Ebay for $10.99. In addition to the questions raised about selling an intensive and gradual process as casually as a McDonald’s hamburger, another question should be raised in regards to the buyer. What was this individual missing when clicking on that bid button?

Perhaps the most common misconception today is that logos only serve an aesthetic purpose. The reality is that these branding tools serve a far greater and significant purpose to the business world.

Logos define how consumers view a company and they also reinforce the potential power your brand holds in its market. It’s not just a pretty picture of what you’re selling; it’s the thoughts and emotions that image invokes in consumers. Take for instance these examples:

Nike Logo

The Nike Swoosh, a graphic designed in the 1970’s, has come to be known as the most famous representation of athleticism. Whether imagining basketball players executing a slam dunk or runners racing up football stadium steps, this single image appeals to our desires to get in shape and to exercise. We even sometimes think their shoes will make our workouts more effective.

Chanel logo

The Chanel logo, another black and white image, screams ‘luxury.’ While Nike reminds us of working up a sweat, Chanel conjures images of shopping, perfume and handbags. Chanel’s logo is a status, and thousands of women buy products with this logo in an attempt to impress others.

Even more impressive are the most successful logos and brands out there that have actually changed aspects of our society.

We all dream of possessing the elegance and beauty of Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s.  Not only has the brand invented a color (Tiffany blue), they’ve also inspired thousands of brides to incorporate the color into their wedding palettes and craft their cakes to look like Tiffany’s boxes.

Perhaps the most impressive of them all, Apple’s marketing has put competitors to shame. Their iPhones, iPods and now iPads have shaped media as we know it. Think about it. Apple single handedly changed the way we listen to music…forever. Thanks to their genius plan, consumers went from snatching up CD’s to purchasing iTunes for their sleek and lightweight iPods. Kids these days couldn’t even tell you what a tape deck was if you paid them. And while Blackberrys were once king, more and more consumers are turning to the iPhone and more often than not saying they could not live without it.

Your logo is potentially the only shot you have at making that all-important statement to your customers as to who you are and why they need you. It’s also the driving force behind your entire branding campaign.  A single image can potentially make or break your business, and that’s why you should only leave its creation to professionals. Wouldn’t you say your career was worth a lot more than $10.99?