Pro-logo versus no logo

Lloyd Northover

Lloyd Northover co-founder John Lloyd entered the debate with a guest piece in Design Week.

“We are told that branding is no longer about logos and design — it is about everything else; it is about corporate behaviour, customer service, product design, product performance, environments, customer communities, consumer experience, consumer power, integrated communications. Of course it is; it always has been… …But, there is no doubt that the logo has played, and continues to play, a central role in brand building.


“To begin to appreciate the value of logos, imagine the world without them. What would Coca-Cola be without its wordmark and visual identity – just another sweet brown fizzy drink? Imagine Nike without its tick (all sports products look alike), and imagine Apple without its cool livery.


“By all means give credit to the researchers, analysts, strategy developers, marketers, behavioural scientists, advertising and PR specialists, webmasters and viral communicators, but please don’t underplay the role of brand designers. Corporate design isn’t easy; it takes a great deal of talent and hard work to create a branding system that will last. So, let us stop knocking logos and logo designers. Let us celebrate the essential contribution of the designer to the building of brands. Let us be pro-logo rather than advocating no-logo.”
— John Lloyd

Simon Manchipp responded to the article through Twitter:

“I’m not knocking designers, I’m questioning what we input, not if we input! I’m saying we should do more! Defending the creation of logos misses the point — sure, create a logo, but there’s so much more to consider.

“Imagine Nike without its tick (all sports products look alike), imagine Apple without its cool livery.”

“Tosh. The product shines through. If the next Apple Air laptop had no logo, it would look even cooler, and sell just as well. That said, O2/Orange/Vodaphone — where there is little tangeable product — relies very heavily on branding to differentiate. Apple just isn’t a useful argument parameter. It’s the exception, not the rule.”

On the face of it, Manchipp and Lloyd disagree, but I’m sure they’ll agree that while logos can be important, they shouldn’t be looked at in isolation. Here’s one of Manchipp’s projects making use of similar mosaics to identify the brand.

Full Design Week article here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *