A logo is a tool to help communicate a brand and represent a brand. When customers consider a brand, they usually associate it with a lifestyle it speaks to.

And so, many new businesses failed as they do not build up an emotional association and representation of their brands.

No matter what lifestyle a brand represents, it ought to be one of the marketing tools that business owners use to inspire enthusiastic commitment and to propel their startup.

Many companies neglect the significance of an effective logo design plan. They may not appear to be as important as getting investment funding or getting the product ready, and so, logo design is usually not on the priority list.

However, if you begin to consider the personality of your new brand, that is the place logo design should not be ignored.

Why does a startup (or any business) require a logo?

There are numerous responses to this question.

Firstly, a good logo design establishes a good first impression, which is important for an organization that is just starting out.

According to statistical research, it just takes clients 10 seconds to form the first impression, and up to 7 impressions to remember it.

Obviously, you do not want a bad first impression because if customers think that it is unappealing from the start, it is highly unlikely they will buy anything from you.

Secondly, a good logo design can instil trust and confident in your brand. If clients do not feel trust or confident when they see your logo, they will not engage with your brand.

In the current business environment, trust and transparency amongst brands and clients are an essential part of success, so do not underestimate the importance of the logo design.

Now that you have a basic idea on why you need a logo, let us proceed onto the elements of a logo.

How should a logo be?

As mentioned in my other article about the difference between a logo and a brand, a logo is a quick, visual representation of a brand’s message and position. A well designed logo should evoke some memory or emotion from the viewer depending upon their relationship with the brand.

Logo designers recommend following certain rules when designing a logo. Example, avoid too many elements to keep the logo design simple, and should not copy logo design of other brands (we do not want to be seen as a counterfeit or worse, face with a copyright issue).

Logomark or Logotype? 

A logo can take on multiple forms including being a logomark, logotype, and a combination of the two. Let’s look at the various types of logos.

A logomark is an identifying mark or symbol that doesn’t contain the business name. Think of the Nike ‘tick’, Shell, WWF, Mercedes or Adidas for examples.

A logotype refers to words or the name of a business that is designed in a special way. Examples include Pinterest, eBay, Yahoo, Coca-Cola or Google.

The combination logo is the perfect mix of graphics and type. It takes both the logomark and logotype and juxtaposes them together, making the combination logo. Combination logos come in a variety of forms and businesses will often use several forms of combination logo.

It is highly recommended to incorporate the name of the brand in the logo design for startups. This is because nobody truly knows your company, so you will need to help them remember it. As the brand recognition grows, you can gradually exclude the brand name as the audience is already familiar with the brand mark.

What colour should I use?

A short answer would be: it will depends on your industry and brand position.

Bright colours like red, yellow or orange encourage appetite and are often used in the Food and Beverage industry logo design, example, McDonald’s or KFC, while cool colours like blue evoke authority, trust and thus are often used in tech companies, example, PayPal or Facebook.

However, there is no hard and fast rules that certain colours are only meant for certain industries. Each colour will evoke certain feelings in general, so you must select the right ones and harness the power of colour psychology.

Red is normally utilised by brands that need to demonstrate enthusiasm, vitality, warmth, power, and risk. This colour is also commonly used by F&B companies since it is known to encourage appetite. Example, Coca Cola, Lego, ESPN, Canon.

Green is utilised less frequently than red since it suggests that the brand means to exhibit ethical or natural credentials. F&Bs use it to influence clients to feel safe connecting with the brand as well. Example, Starbucks, BP, Android.

Purple for many would not be the primary choice. However, a great deal of organisations are utilising it, including FedEx, Cadbury, Yahoo. The colour suggests magnificence, rich, creativity, sovereignty, and uniqueness.

Blue is the colour used to inspire specialist, trust, consistency, and professionalism. That is why big corporations such as Samsung, American Express, BMW, IBM, and Facebook often uses this colour.

Orange demonstrate warmth, motivation, optimistic, freedom and fun. That is the reason Amazon, HTML5, Mozilla, and other cutting edge brands are utilizing it. What’s more, orange is also thought to evoke hunger like red colour.

Yellow is often avoided by logo designers as some may be reminded of warning signs. However if used correctly, it suggests positive nature, warmth, and friendliness. Popular brands that utilised this colour are IKEA, Ferrari, Nikon, and Shell (and also DaPlan Design Agency).

Black is used generally by top of the line brands. In spite of the fact that this colour is usually connected with class, luxury, sophistication and power, numerous individuals additionally see it as a shade of death and villainy. Famous cases of black logos includes Apple, Adidas, Chanel, Zara, L’Oréal, Nike, Nestle, and Gucci.

Multiple colours is a common choice as well. However, you should consider making it only if your logo needs to evoke fun, easy-going nature, innovation, and children-friendliness of your brand. The common implication of such logos is that the companies are offering a wide range of products and services. The examples of Google, Microsoft, PlayStation and eBay perfectly illustrate this point.

Lastly, different colours also have different meanings in different cultures. Example, red symbolises good luck, joy, prosperity in most Asian cultures while it is associated with communism and revolution in countries like Russia and some countries in Africa associate red with death. So choose the right colour for your brand.

What font should I use?

Again, this depends on your industry and brand position.

Like colours, there are different font categories and each translate into a different meaning.

  • Serif fonts have a line at the end of each stroke. Traditional and professional.
  • Sans serif fonts do not have that line at the end of each stroke. Crisp and modern.
  • Script fonts (and italics) are generally formal and decorative. Sophisticated and feminine.
  • Handwriting fonts tend to be casual and personal. Friendly and approachable.

The Bottom Line

The best advice for you is to think of a unique style and logo versatility. Having a logo design that can be split up, swapped around, scaled up and scaled down is crucial for maintaining a strong brand in all your outward-facing media channels.

Starting a business is a challenging and demanding project that can influence you to disregard the logo design. However, it is recommended that you give it some thought because it will improve your chances of success in the short- and long-term. As your business grows, your logo will be in more places.

If you need help with creating a bespoke professional graphic logo for your startup, click here to see how we can work together to build an awesome brand.


DaPlan is a Singapore-based creative design agency specialising in brand building with a visual focused approach. We build awesome brands and help them get off the ground.

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