Monday, January 27, 2014

To Suck or Not to Suck, That is Your Logo

After seeing some horrible logo makeovers and creations this week I wanted to give a few pointers for those of you that haven't been to my branding seminar. More information can be found at this page on our site: elleven

To make my argument, look around you. There are busy, horrible logos all around you. If you want to get distracted, search "bad logo" in your favorite search engine and see what people paid for. Ouch.

But here is the lesson for today:

Graphically Simple- A brand should be simple to look at or you are immediately labeled as not simple to do business with. Look at the major dominating brands. Do they have a lot of shapes? Are they complex? Are they easy for your brain to process? Easy to remember? Small business owners especially fall pray to trying to fit too much in their logo. A lot can be fit into a logo, but it is done with the way the shapes are used, colored, positioned, etc. Symbolism should be used artfully.

We hear it all the time, "But without that, it doesn't say all I do..." When going to McDonald's I don't remember seeing breakfast burritos in the logo. There is a significant trend demanded by the people of this paradigm for simplicity. "Tell me quickly what you do." Unilever is an example how to effectively communicate many things, but it is limited in it's use.

The logo should be designed well enough that it can be embroidered and not have to rely on graphics made from billions of colors, complicated shading...

You get what you pay for...and wait for- FedEx reportedly spent 5 million dollars and 2 years to have their brand redone. It incorporates rewarded comprehension...(See the arrow?), effective color schemes and excellent flexibility. A real bargain for them if you look at how it has helped them increase market share. I am not suggesting you run out and spend millions, but learn from the greats,...without knocking them off. There is a reason why these companies pay more than a couple hundred bucks for a logo...because they work.  

A couple other fun ones:

Next $100k

BP redesign $211MM

BBC $1.8MM

Pepsi $1MM

accenture $100MM

Friday, January 17, 2014

Oreo Proves Big Corporate CAN Be Nimble in Social Media

Oreo surprised the world of business with their quick Twitter tweet response to the Superbowl power outage last year. Well done #Oreo. You have my respect for a job well done. Oreo got play without a big game time ad space price tag. 

I have insulted large corporations for years because of their lethargic response to marketplace need, demand and opportunity. In this out of site, out of mind society we live in, most campaigns for large corporations are "so two weeks ago".  

We launched our H1N1 Swine Flew campaign for Chiropractors only one week after the panic was spread across the news media world in 2009. Our small Chiropractic clients had the ability to shift gears in their marketing and put the new campaign in place immediately. Large corporations were unable to respond in a timely manner due to red tape, budgets, approvals, processes... bottom line, large companies failed to capitalize on this gem of an opportunity. Three days after presenting the new campaign to the Chiropractors the postcards were mailed and office posters, brochures, presentation kits, etc. were delivered. 

Here is the postcard we did. Cheap, quick and effective. Our pig model was not even paid. 

Some corporations have tried to be quick and nimble on their feet through social media. This has backfired on some, costing them millions in minutes. But just think of the money they saved by hiring a new college graduate to post for them! Bad move. That grad needs help to be the mouthpiece of the company. 

These large companies are either going to have to preset guidelines or spend the money and get someone that can communicate with their clientele in a way they want to be communicated with, when the opportunity is there and without compromising brand integrity. These people would have to have direct access to a decision maker all the time to expedite response times. 

Corporations need to understand you are not going to go viral while keeping everyone happy all the time. There is some risk involved and not everyone is going to like every campaign every time. But, it is well worth the risk as the rewards far outweigh the risks. Whatever system you choose to be nimble in the marketplace, choose one and be prepared to respond to the opportunities that present themselves.