A brand’s logo is supposed to be the most critical element of its identity. It is the first thing a consumer usually looks at and use, to evaluate the product behind it. In short, it is a logo that creates the first impression of a brand.

A lot of time, effort and brain-storming goes into designing a logo. The first and foremost task for a logo designer is to understand the values and the message that the brand wants to communicate through it’s logo. This involves understanding the product, the target audience and the nature of the organization the logo is trying to represent. Even if one these factors are misunderstood, the logo can turn into a disaster.

For example, both Aeropostale and Banana Republic are commercial organizations offering the same kind of product, but just because their target audience is different, their logo designs are of different styles.

Text Only Logos:

Depending on various factors, a logo design can have a lot of graphics, a little graphics or no graphics at all. Sometimes the concept and the message of the logo is such that there is no need to use any graphics and the text is enough to establish a brand’s identity.

In these text only logos, a number of elements are used to illustrate the concept easily and quickly. These elements help the consumer in establishing a fair perception of the brand and that too without a lot of effort on the consumer’s part.

Some of these design elements that help creating a successful logo are discussed below with examples:

  1. Font
  2. Texture/Shape
  3. Substitution
  4. Color/Contrast
  5. Demonstratione

1. Font:

It is no secret that font selection is one of the most critical aspects of designing a logo. Some logos require a casual font while some require a sophisticated font. There are fonts that scream seriousness and then there are fonts that scream creativity and fun.

Here are some of the logos that use distinct fonts to communicate their message:

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2. Texture/Shape:

A lot of designers use the texture or the shape of the text to communicate the message. However, these logos are a little riskier since they expect the user to understand the message behind the shape of the text.

For example, in the Urban logo below, if a user does not relate the size of the alphabets to buildings in a city, he/she would not enjoy the logo as much.

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3. Substitution:

Often times, one or two alphabets in a logo are substituted with a symbol or character to illustrate the concept. This substitution adds to the beauty of the logo and makes it easier for the consumer to grasp the idea. Look at these great examples doing exactly that:

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4. Color/Contrast:

It is very important to select the right colors for a logo design. Often, the colors and contrast of a logo are the key to establish the brand’s identity in a beautiful manner. Designers often use background colors tactfully to make the text more prominent. Other times, colors of the alphabets are contrasted to make them stand out and easy to read.

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5. Demonstration:

The last element I wanted to mention is demonstration. You often come across logos that demonstrate their message using creative symbolism and a lot of other factors. Such logos do require a little bit of thinking to understand the concept but once you do, it is simply amazing. Here are some really awesome examples:

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A successful logo can have any or all of these design elements. For example, the Design Cypher logo uses the organizations of alphabets, the font as well as contrasting colors of the words to illustrate the concept. However, it is also important to keep in mind that users should be able to remember the logo easily. If you insert a lot of subtle meanings and creative bits in a logo, some people might not understand it easily and may think of it as a bad or meaningless logo. This, again, depends on your target audience as well. For example, a lot of people would love the Evolution X logo, but it would not make much sense to those who are not familiar with the concept of evolution.

Creating successful text only logos might be a bit challenging, but they can be worth every second of your time because they are relatively more simple, easily remembered, describable and scalable, as compared to a logo that is full of graphics.

What do you think are some other elements used in designing a  text only logo?

Are there any other major pros and cons of using a text-only logo?

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