More often than not, the words “logo” and “brand” get thrown around synonymously. While the terms are related, they are not one and the same. In 2019’s professional world, and in order to properly market themselves, it is important for all businesses to understand the distinctions between their logos and their branding. You may believe you’ve perfected both of these tactics, one of these tactics, or admit you’ve never thought about either — no matter where you fall, digging deeper into how these terms compare may really help your company, your brand, and your logo.
What is a logo?
In the simplest terms, your logo is a mark or an identifier — made up of text, shapes, or images — that represents a company. Logos should be simple, memorable, versatile, appropriate and timeless. While a logo does help to identify your company, it does not truly embody your company’s identity. Logos exist to create optically appealing uniformity, increase recognition, communicate certain qualities of your business, deliver visual first impressions and look great on bumpers — but logos do not come close to encompassing entire brands.
What is a brand?
Your brand is the vision behind the logo. More specifically, the vision behind your business’s foundation, mission statement, and goals. It is the sum experience of every touchpoint your customer has with your product or services: logo, colors, typography, imagery, mission statements, advertising, social media, tone of voice, personality, customer relations… the list could go on and on. Your brand is, in a sense, everything your company does; your brand is every detail of your company, tangible and intangible.
Consider Apple. As a consumer, do you recognize Apple products from A) their small apple logo, or B) the innovation, passion, simplicity, and imagination woven throughout their brand? Even if you thought A) their small apple logo, you should realize you only recognize that logo because of Apple’s branding. Branding comes first. Apple is much more than a logo, and its logo would mean nothing without their branding.
Read our article about Brand Archetypes for more in-depth brand-building suggestions.
Whether you realize it or not, as a company, you already have a brand. Is it the brand you want? If you removed your logo, would your purpose and voice be recognizable? Would you be recognizable? Logos are important identifiers, but when it comes down to it, the voice of your brand speaks so much louder than your logo.
If you’re interested in taking your brand to the next level, we can help you explore your options.
-Written by Lily Tillman