The type-only look is popular among tech, media, fashion and food industries
Ever wondered why the logos of IKEA, ZARA, Subway and Google are so easy to recall? Wordmarks aka logotypes is a popular type of logo including only the brand name without any symbols, mascots or emblems.
The type-only look is popular among tech, media, fashion and food industries as the wordmark is easily recognisable and the brand name itself becomes the visual brand identity. Wordmarks are also preferable for new brands or startup companies launching in new markets.
Wordmarks work for companies with a short, punchy name; preferably one-worded. In case the business has a longer name containing multiple words, a monogram or a lettermark might be better. Owing to their simplicity, special care must be given to typography so that the logo communicates well without any visual aid.
Think of adjectives for your brand’s personality. Getting the right type is the first step in crafting a memorable wordmark. Reflect on the tone and feel of the brand and its product/services. Would a script font, a sans-serif font, or a slab font work best for your wordmark? The right typeface would be legible in multiple sizes and placements. To craft the perfect wordmark, give attention to letter spacing, font weight, kerning and casing. Modifying a typeface or designing a custom font can make it unique.
Adding character and flair using design elements, colour, shapes or even type elements like ligatures, notches or curves will add an element of surprise to the wordmark. While character features are fun to explore, remember to not go overboard. Amazon logo is a perfect example. The arrow connects “a” to “z” with one swift move, just like your experience will be on the platform. This arrow is also sometimes called “the smile”, bringing a friendly touch to the logo.
Colour and shapes can be leveraged to achieve an identity that complements the brand. Adopting web-friendly and print-friendly colours ensures that the font can be placed against a variety of backgrounds. One might require reverse colour variations of your logo to make it dark-mode friendly. A strong logo made of bright colours is easier to integrate across various platforms.
While designing the perfect wordmark, don't forget about the market and your competition! Being aware of your competitors’ logos will help you understand what sells and how you can stand out. A good wordmark does not compromise on legibility and simplicity. It is mindful of negative and enclosed spaces. Widely taught in design schools, The FedEx logo perfectly encapsulates the clever usage of negative space to form an arrow in their wordmark, giving the logo a sense of dynamism.
The world’s most memorable and loved wordmarks include the colourful eBay logo, the playful Disney logo fashioned after Walt Disney’s signature, and the sharp edges and corners of the Canon logo, Calvin Klein and Kleenex. Nestle’s bold logo is based on the Helvetica font while the redesigned VISA logo is an example of a sophisticated and mature wordmark. Perhaps the world's favourite drink and one of the world's most recognizable logos is the Coca-Cola wordmark.