Here, we explain the most common logo redesign mistakes that can ruin your business. We also share the stories of companies that have committed these costly errors.
Logo redesign is not something you do out of whim lest you end up confusing your existing customers or creating something that fails to represent, or worse, contradicts the core value of your business. In fact, there are only two valid reasons to revamp your look:
- Over the years, your company has changed its services and products drastically.
- Your business has been around so long that the logo is so outdated that failure to refresh your look could give customers the impression that you don’t embrace innovation and modernity. (Do you remember the typical logo design in the 90s when companies had the propensity to overuse clip arts and 3D gradients?)
Once you have established a good reason to refresh your logo and revamp your brand, make sure that you avoid these redesign mistakes that can spell disaster to your business.
Copying Another Company's Logo
While imitation might be the highest form of flattery, in logo redesign it only means two things: You lack imagination, or worse, you lack trust and confidence in your products and services that you need to piggyback off another successful company.
In 2019, Sears released its new logo that was criticized for its apparent resemblance to Airbnb’s. The once-dominant retail giant wanted to overhaul its image after filing for bankruptcy a year before but ended up doing more harm than good.
Aside from the public backlash, duplicating or copying another company’s logo can also lead to legal consequences. Additionally, your business could be confused for someone else’s, which could mean lost sales and opportunities.
Being Too Esoteric And Abstract
Some companies use an esoteric symbol to redesign their logo, assuming that their customers will interpret it in a way that is similar to theirs. However, symbols are not always universal, which is something that food and lifestyle company Tastemade learned the hard way when in 2018, it added a stylized “T” that they said to represent the company’s “active and evolving shape.” But when people were asked what they thought about the symbol, some said it resembled dripping saliva, while others believed it was a twisted “S.”
To avoid this cringe-worthy logo redesign mistake, use simpler and easier-to-spot elements that communicate your business’ core values. Simply put, stick to a logo that conveys a direct message rather than “scream” too many stories or esoteric implications.
In general, simpler logos can convey a stronger, more direct message, while the use of too much symbolism or esoteric design elements can make it less memorable to people.
Joining The Bandwagon
Changing your logo just because you want to look trendy often leads to disastrous results, which BMW has learned the hard way. In 2020, the car manufacturer revamped its iconic logo for the first time in 23 years.
The new logo has a transparent thick outer ring, which used to be a solid black; this means that when it is set against a background, let’s say red, the red will appear in that portion. The company released a statement saying that their design is based on the “flatter look” trend that is perceived to be ideal when posted in digital media.
In an attempt to look trendy and “digital,” the company sacrificed its well-known identity (it is a brand associated with elegance and luxury). As a result, it has received some backlash from car enthusiasts and fans alike.
Forgetting About Versatility
When you redesign your logo, make sure that its design elements, especially its color, are legible and recognizable on different mediums–offline and online. Retail store Sears is another great example of how breaking this sacrosanct rule can lead to disaster. Not only does their new logo closely resemble Airbnb’s, but they also use a gradient symbol in which the transition of green to turquoise is barely detectable on most screens.
Aside from careful selection of colors, you should also scale your logo to different sizes to ensure that you come up with the final design that is clean and easy to read and replicate.
Relying Too Much On Color
Color is not the only design element that you should consider when revamping your look. The shape, symbol, font, and text are equally important factors that can make or break your new logo.
When you rely too heavily on color during your redesign process, you lose a great deal of versatility, just like in the case of Sears’ symbol that uses a gradient color of turquoise and green that is hard to detect on most screens.
Also, if your new logo relies only on color to convey a message, it will look good on a simple white background. But when placed against other shades or printed in black-and-white color, the same design loses all its meaning.
Being Too Radical
When you completely overhaul your logo, you risk confusing, or worse, losing existing customers. So in most cases, it pays off to be conservative when it comes to logo redesign because at least it will remain recognizable by your existing clients and preserve your brand equity.
To learn more about logo design and revamping, call LOJO Marketing at (916) 303-4080 and schedule a free consultation. We will sit with you to learn about your company’s core values and the reasons behind the revamp. We will then explain the design elements that can help you deliver the message you want to convey to your existing and potential customers.