What’s the lifespan of a logo, does it have an expiry date? Is it something that needs to stay untouched , or is it a symbol that should evolve with the company?
Today, we gather to reflect on why, when, and why a brand logo needs an update. Before we start, it’s great that you take the time to reflect on your brand’s image with your team and whether it needs an update. That being said, let’s investigate the lifespan of a logo. There is a certain logic based on conducted research and observations on brands as with branding and marketing. But when it comes down to managing a brand’s appearance and presence, every case is different. So today, instead of giving you a precise answer to whether you’ve reached the limit of your logo’s potential. We will offer you a bunch of questions to think and define for yourself. Of course, if you want us to help you find the answers or refresh your brand identity, we would be pleased to partner with you.
The average lifespan of a logo
Starting with some positive news- the lifespan of a logo is much longer than the life of a website. So you won’t need to update it every 3 to 5 years like it is with websites. However, the life cycle of a logo is around 10 years. And here we are talking about a professionally designed logo. If you have a self-made one while still validating your idea and testing the market, its lifespan is much shorter, and probably it’s time to reconsider it. Like a website, a logo creates an impression and plays a massive role in marketing. In other words, a website is your online home where you invite your audience, and the logo is the face of your brand. We can’t say that there is a fixed expiry date for a logo, but getting outdated and old-fashioned is something you can’t avoid. The lifespan of the logo depends on many factors. Today we’ll share a few ideas, questions, and thoughts with you and thoughts you may want to consider if you’re going to keep your brand’s image on track.
What are the main features of a great logo?
First, let’s investigate the main features of a great professional logo that will last a decade. What you should do is think about your logo and logotype and how it relates to those. You can also make a scale from 0-10 and classify the current state of your logo. Try to be honest and objective.
Let’s start with the essential one – making a simple design that is easily identifiable without being complicated. Your audience should understand your logo and identify the different elements forming the image.
An efficient design will make your logo recognizable and tell your story. It will be appropriate to the nature of your business and memorizable for your target group. For example, let’s say you have a building company located in California, where the grizzly bear symbolizes. Creating a logo where you mix a helmet that keeps the workers secure and resembles a bear’s head will make an impression because it’s unusual. Furthermore, it will serve as a reference to the people in CA and speak for your business’s essence. Briefly said, a good logo – fits the purpose yet leaves an impression.
A logo should be timeless in a way that it’s not created to cope with a trend. But at the same time versatility of the logo is vital. When it comes down to the usages, both the logo and the logotype must aways look good, on different backgrounds, mediums, and alongside other logos. If you have a brand book, the designers who made the logo and the brand book should mention the usages, the colors, and how to scale the logo. We’ve uploaded a part of the brand book we did for CrossFit Serdica here. Another example we love is the brand book of UBER. You can check it out here.
Those are the three main aspects your team should keep in mind when auditing your current logo design. But there’s more to this. Here are a few more things to think about before moving on to a new symbol that will represent your business.
The 3 big questions to think about before making up your mind
Is the brand’s logo recognizable?
Consider how much recognition you have for your current logo. Is it already well known? Do you think your audience is already familiar with it? How would you evaluate your logo’s equity? If you still feel that your brand doesn’t get the most out of it, and doesn’t attract attention on the shelf or in your field, maybe a shift or readjustment of your logo can do the trick.
Should I go for a complete redesign or just a lifting?
Sometimes making minor changes to the design, the typography, and the color can do magic. Transitions like this are less risky, but they can help your audience notice you in the light you wish to see. A great example of a redesign we did in 2019 is LIREX. Read the full story here.
Can our team handle the transition to a new logo?
This is a major point to consider. If you are willing to change your logo, the new one should replace it everywhere. This is valid for all online and offline mediums. It may involve changing office decors, branding of shops, labels, updating the website, etc. But the good news is that you’ll have tons of new content to share with your audience and get them involved with this transition.
A slight hint from us – you can involve your audience with the changes, ask them what they prefer, form a sort of a focus group on social media, for instance, and see their opinion on the new designs. People love to feel part of something big, so make them feel special and ask for ideas.
Now that we’ve opened the curtain to some things you should ask yourself and colleagues regarding your current logo, let’s see some of the reasons you may want to change it, leaving aside the possible miss-function of the current logo.
Some good reasons to update your logo
The company has achieved something big lately, or the company celebrating a milestone?
Those are great reasons to refresh your brand’s logo. Likewise, if your company has bought another business and now it’s becoming a parent company, it would be the best time to spread the news with a new symbol that communicates it. Like FedEx, for instance, which in 2015 purchased Genco. Or Uber.
The brand has a new value proposition?
A shift in the values requires a shift in the logo to show it. For example, if your company has shifted to a more responsible business model, changing the colors, principles, or complementary colors will communicate it to your audience. Such a shift can show your brand’s determination and establish a sense of trust. A strong presentation leads to a strong perception.
What are some major positive sides of a new logo?
- People would have the feeling that the brand is older as it has reached the phase where the logo needs an update.
- A new logo means a modern made logo. And brands should keep up with the pace. Look at Instagram. Over the past years, they’ve changed the logo a few times, and every time it makes an impression, people talk about it. They are a platform for instant communication, and that’s what they do – they change to keep up with the vibe.
Brands are being constantly evaluated consciously or subconsciously. So keep in mind that what has worked for you 10 years ago may not work today. Audiences shift. They become more exigent and search for better alternatives all the time. If your company is selling products to teenagers, well, every subsequent generation has a different view on what’s aesthetically pleasing. So keeping up is essential. Of course, this doesn’t mean to stick with the design trends that usually last a year or two, but modernize so you don’t look outdated. Get a simple logo that speaks about your company, tells your story, and winks at your target.