Red Adobe Logo
Adobe Logo

A logo is the foundational element of a company’s branding strategy and are a critical aspect of business marketing. As the company’s major graphical representation, a logo identifies a company’s brand and becomes the single most visible manifestation of the company within the target market. For this reason, a well-designed logo is an essential part of any company’s overall marketing strategy.


Logos are intended to be the “face” of a company: They are graphical displays of a company’s unique identity, and through colours and fonts and images they provide information about a company that allows customers to identify with the company’s core brand. Logos are also a shorthand way of referring to the company in advertising and marketing materials; they also provide an anchor point for the various fonts, colours and design choices in all other business marketing materials.

Design Principles

Good logos should be unique and identifiable to potential customers. Although there are myriad choices for colour, visual elements and typography, in general a logo should help convey some information about the company, or be designed in a way that gives some sense of meaning about the company or its industry. For example, cutting-edge firms and tech companies tend to have angular logos to convey speed, while service-oriented firms have rounded logos to provide a sense of service and trust.

Brand Identity

Logos are the chief visual component of a company’s overall brand identity. The logo appears on stationery, websites, business cards and advertising. For that reason, a well-designed logo can contribute to business success, while a substandard logo can imply amateurishness and turn off potential customers. However, a logo should cohere well with other aspects of a company’s visual presentation: No logo, however well designed, can look good when surrounded by contradictory graphical elements or inconsistent fonts. This is why a logo is the basic unit of a larger brand identity that includes company fonts, colours and document-design guidelines.

Return on Investment

As consumers begin to know, like and trust a specific brand, they are more likely have successive positive encounters with a logo. This can potentially leading to increased sales or improved market share within the target market. In addition, a well-designed logo gives the impression of a degree of professionalism and competence that could help steer potential new clients toward selecting the business rather than a competitor.

Common Mistakes

Small businesses often play it fast-and-loose with logos, paying insufficient attention to their proper size and positioning and surrounding them with materials–including clipart–that compete with them visually. Avoid re-creating different types of logos for specific purposes (e.g., letterhead and business cards) or having similar-but-not-identical versions for print and online purposes.

Design Protection

Logos and their design may be protected by copyright, via various intellectual property organisations worldwide which make available procedures to register a design to give it protection at law. For example, in Australia, the Intellectual Property Office IP Australia govern registered designs, patents and trademarks. Generally speaking,  the trademark registration will not ‘make claim’ to colours used, meaning it is the visual design that will be protected, even if it is reproduced in a variety of other colours or backgrounds.

Further reading