By Wendy Rall   Volume 1 Article 1

 Here is the first of a series I am writing about branding titled "Branding Advice" Here is my first: Keeping it clean.

A logo is a symbol or signature that identifies a company or product. When it comes to your logo, less is more. Make your logo easy to read, and easy to remember, by using simple graphics and only a few colors.

Often business owners don’t consider all the ways in which their logo will appear. For example, a logo will appear small on a business card, and even smaller on promotional materials such as a pen or lighter. On the other hand, imagine the same logo on a booth at a trade show. Would attendees be able to identify the logo clearly from a distance and in a room full of other exhibitors? Simple images, with minimal text, are more easily recognized.

A logo must also be identifiable when reproduced mono-chromatically (in one color only). There are times when your logo will appear in black and white, such as on forms or promotional items. If you sponsor an event, your logo will be featured alongside a sea of other logos, which are often small and in one color. If you love your logo when you see it in one color only, you’re on the right track.

A more complicated image may work well as a tee shirt design but not as a corporate logo. For example, the owner of Peach Tree Landscaping wanted an image, with a waterfall in the background, for his staff tee shirts. Although the scenic design was great for use on a tee shirt, it was not ideal for a company logo. In order for a logo to be effective, it needs to be identifiable—especially when reduced in size or reproduced mono-chromatically. A corporate logo was created and you can see the difference in readability between the tee shirt logo and the corporate logo.