I was recently asked about the simplicity of so many successful logos. I love the opportunity to answer questions like this. I swear that if I ever stop designing it will be to talk/teach about designing.
The short answer, of course, is "because simple logos work." But, that short answer would spark a much more complex question: Why do simple logos work? Why does building on foundation of simplicity lead to successful brands?
By now, we've all heard about Google Plus and most of us have started an account even if just to figure out what it is. Odds are as soon as you heard about it you envisioned a cyber war with Facebook. Odds are you chose a side before you even went to the site; I know I did. However, before we put on the war paint, let me suggest that one will not necessarily negate the other. Google Plus and Facebook are not competing for your affections. (Well, they are a little.) They are competing for ad dollars (and that's why they need your affections). In this post I hope to illuminate the ideas that I think are superior. I'm not making a prediction on who will win, whether or not these ideas will make money or even if these ideas will be implemented well. Good ideas help the world to progress.
I'm speaking at the Emerge Luncheon this month, but I decided to make this information available on here as well. I thought about titling this How to Use Your Logo and Website to Tell a Story of Your Brand With Which Your Target Audience Will Identify. I figured that was too long of a title so I settled on Show and Tell. As I mention in the About Me portion of my website, being a story teller is a big part of who I am, and telling stories is a big part of what I do. Traditionally when we think of story tellers we think that they merely use words. This, of course, is not the case. True story tellers use words, to be sure, but they also use infliction, expressions, movements, illustrations, audience participation and all sorts of extra-vernacular devices. When it comes to telling the story of your brand it is no different. I specialize in using graphics (particularly websites) to tell the story of your brand.
First impressions are key; everyone knows that. What most people don't realize, though, is that first impressions are almost never made during a first introduction. First impressions can be made at any point for any reason. For each person it's a little different. Conventional wisdom would say to always be on your best behavior. Seth Godin says to be, "authentic and consistent." And all of that is good advice. Still the fact remains that you are spending ad dollars here. So you may as well get your money's worth out of it. The only way to do that is to be proactive. Literally make a first impression. Do something that makes people form an opinion.
I have the best clients (and readers) in the world. Most designers have to pull teeth to get paid in a timely fashion. My clients often call me up saying. "Have you billed us yet? We want to get you paid!" Ah, what great people! So, I'm going to start trying to give a little back. Eventually, I'd like to make these freebies more like prizes (with monetary value and everything). For now, I will just make it something that anyone can get. I've made an image that you can apply as the wallpaper of your desktop. Feel free to take the image and run, but if you'd like to hear about it, I'll tell you the story behind the image.
P.S. I'm also trying out a new commenting feature. Let me know what you think/if it works on your browser.