DESIGN A LOGO

SAGI HAVIV

As told to Brad Wieners

ILLUSTRATION BY NEAL FOX

A great logo is not about what one likes or dislikes. It’s about what works. And what we want to determine is: What problem is our client trying to solve? Often a company might want a new logo to freshen up its image, when really it should keep its logo but change its marketing. Look at Pepsi. It’s been years, and I bet few people could draw the new logo from memory. The old one they could, instantly. It was a perfectly good mark. Coke, meanwhile, has had more success keeping its wordmark the same but constantly changing its packaging and marketing. When you want a new logo is when your current trademark is too complex, no longer relevant to your brand, or you want to unite various sub-brands. A new mark should be an uncomplicated form that can work anywhere, from a billboard to an app tile. It must be appropriate and relevant to the company and its field. And it must be memorable. Of course, the simpler the form, the less special it tends to be, so the challenge of designing an iconic logo becomes: How memorable can a design be while remaining simple? • Sagi Haviv is a partner with Chermayeff & Geismar, which designed the NBC peacock, Chase octagon, and National Geographic rectangle.

Watch Sagi Haviv explain how to design a logo www.businessweek.com/howto/logo

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