Abstract Logos – What are they?


What does a swoosh mean to you? For most of the Americans, one glance at this symbol is sufficient to recognize it as a Nike product. Similarly three angular stripes creating a shape of mountain would invariably speak of the brand of Adidas. Then there is McDonald’s Golden Arch and Pepsi’s red, blue and white colored earth or Chevrolet’s bow tie.

These are all examples of abstract logos. Over the years they have achieved an incredible task: one look at the any of the above mentioned symbols and you know what they mean is finger licking KFC Chicken, or a cool Nike sports shoe or a stylish Adidas custom t-shirt design.   All of them have been able to build up a brand identity on the basis of their respective logos. Permanently imprinting the product’s name in the customers’ minds, these abstract logos hold immense impact on consumer psyche they have built up unique visual identity for themselves which have become the integral part of their name.

What is an abstract logo?

According to the marketing experts, you get your prospective customers to remember your company name only after he/ she sees the company name at least ten times. A tough scene isn’t it? A successful marketing logos campaign is one that makes it easier for the customers to remember the company name. The only way to do this is: associating your company name or product with certain visual stimulant and an abstract logo can act as the best visual stimulus for the purpose. To be precise, abstract logos are nothing but unique logos images to represent a particular company or product.

How does an abstract logo perform its functions?

The human brain is better capable of distinguishing and remembering a unique design. Thus, the consumers can distinguish an abstract logo quicker than any other styles and it becomes easier for the customers to identify the brand bearing the logo in the crowd of other products.

Abstract logos with their unique font type, colors and illustration easily catch the attention of the customers. But too much abstraction may confuse a customer about the nature of your business. Thus an abstract logo has to be unique and attractive on the one hand and simple in design on the other.

Who needs them and who doesn’t?

The abstract logos are ideal for the big corporate Houses, whose logo becomes the main highlight of their entire marketing campaign and who can afford the expenses for popularizing the logo. Because the abstract logos– as for example the little swirl of the Nike it has no significance of its own. Yet we readily recognize the symbol, because the company has made extensive efforts to make it ubiquitous through all their marketing campaigns.

Similarly, the smaller businesses are not the ones to get the benefits of abstract logos simply because they can not afford the level of marketing that is required to associate this abstract imagery to associate with the company name. For them a descriptive or name based logo type better serves the purpose.

To be successful, an abstract logo has to combine the right amount of simplicity and complexity. A wrong proportion may destroy the very objective of the logo design. Only a professional logo designer can render this proportion.