Finding the perfect logo to represent your brand can be brutal! A good logo is memorable, differentiates you from everyone else, and cultivates brand loyalty. To choose the best logo for your business, it’s crucial to know the differences between the various types of logos. Here are the five types of logos you need to know about:

Name-based Logos

These logos don’t use images or icons in their designs. Instead, they primarily use a strong typeface and color palette to stand out. There are two sub-types of name-based logos: wordmark logos, and lettermark logos.

Wordmark logos are text only, such as company names, monograms, or initials. Essentially, they’re just a business name set in a particular typeface (font). Typography plays a big role in creating a wordmark logo. Since the focus will be on your company name, you’ll want to choose or create a font that captures the essence of your business.

A wordmark logo makes it quite clear what your company represents. And, because the design is all in the lettering, these logo types easily transfer to marketing materials.

A wordmark is a good decision if you’re a new business and need to get your name out there. They’re also a good option if you have a distinct business name that will stick in customers’ minds—just make sure that name is short, as long names can look too cluttered as a logo.

A lettermark is a typography-based logo that’s just a few letters, usually a company’s initials. The lettermark is all about simplicity. By using just a few letters, lettermark logos streamline long company names. For example, how much easier is it to say—and remember—HBO versus Home Box Office? If you want to simplify complicated or long company names, the letterform logo is your pal.

 Image-based Logos

Image- (or icon-) based logos use images to send a message about the brand they represent. There are three main sub-types of image-based logos.

An emblem logo consists of font inside a symbol or an icon, like badges, seals, and crests. These logos tend to have a traditional appearance that make them timeless and are often the go-to choice for schools, organizations, or government agencies. Emblems look terrific as an embroidered patch on clothing.

A pictorial mark is a graphic image or illustration that is immediately recognizable because it’s been simplified and stylized in a unique way to clearly represent a specific company, product, or brand. It’s probably the image that comes to mind when you think “logo”: the iconic Apple logo, the Twitter bird, the Target bullseye. A true brand mark is only an image. Because of this, it can be a tricky logo type for new companies, or those without strong brand recognition, to use.

An abstract mark is a symbol that conveys a big idea in an interesting shape. It might represent an idea or value rather than provide a direct message. The Chase logo, for example, represents forward motion, while simultaneously symbolizing the different parts of the bank itself.

Need a new logo, or want to refresh your current logo? LMD can help!