The New Standard Life Logo: Is It Too Bland?

By Mash Bonigala

Standard Life may be an old investment firm (one of the oldest in the UK, in fact, with a history dating back to 1825) but it has an entirely new logo design, brand and corporate identity that have been created to give this company a modern edge.

The new identity has been designed by a UK logo design agency and comes with a new tagline and a newly designed website. The company is also making changes to certain parts of their business, expanding the ability to manage accounts online. The new logo also comes with a major change in management, as Standard Life was bought by Barclay’s last year.

A few elements of the old brand were kept for continuity. The blue and yellow colours remain, as does the presence of a yellow triangle. From there, however, almost everything has been changed. The blue is now the background colour, rather than a clear, pure white. The capital letters have been softened and down-sized to round, modern lettering. The banner, which gave a traditional and old-fashioned feeling, is also gone.

This new logo design is clearly created to be reminiscent of the old, but it is stronger, bolder, and friendlier at the same time. This sets the company apart in a bold way. However, there are a few critiques as well. The wording is off centre and yet very tight within the blue rectangle, which gives it a crowded feeling. The old logo design had the writing with a rectangle, but it was an implied white rectangle that blended in with the background and gave the wording a little space.

Another critique of the new logo is that the yellow triangle feels a little random. While this shape normally implies strength, in this case it sits alone in a corner of the image. It feels like a kite, a bird or even an object being blown about in the wind. That is hardly the image that the company wants to give.

The new logo design is intended to reflect the ever diversifying and expanding, but we aren’t really sure how it will accomplish this. Hopefully there will be internet and television commercials with animations that give the logo design more meaning. It comes with a new tagline as well: The Way Forward. Maybe the triangle is intended to be an arrow pointing the way forward. The problem with this logo is that its intent is very unclear, and if it is unclear to people in design industry it surely is so to customers.

The new Standard Life logo may need clarification, but it is still better than its predecessor. The old logo may have been good in its time, but its time has passed. There were no elements that a modern audience would appreciate, while the new logo at least has a contemporary feeling and a sense of direction. The new logo represents the changes that the company is undergoing, even if we do not agree with all of the design elements.