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Changing your Logo:  Evolution or Revolution?

For most companies, their logo is their visual shorthand.  The most effective logos convey a clear, unique and memorable message. 

If a logo is strong, it can support a company for decades.  For others, a change may become needed as a company’s market focus or product mix evolves.  Perhaps modernizing a logo that looks dated makes sense.

More obviously, a corporate merger, acquisition or spinoff usually necessitates a corporate name and logo change.  
Whenever the urge to change a logo occurs, it’s important to address the “why” and “what if” factors, because it’s such a momentous step.  Consider these possibile approaches:

Can we “change without changing?” – In other words, is it possible to refine your brand image while leaving your logo intact?  If you’re operating from a position of market strength, the best option may be “leaving well enough alone” while changing other aspects of your branding.

Can we “evolve”? – Some companies tweak or adjust their logos on a continuum, without fundamentally altering their character. Think of logos like Nike and Apple that have been refined over the years to keep them fresh – yet they remain immediately recognizable.  

Is “revolutionary” change needed? – If your company is undertaking a major strategic shift in the marketplace –  or you’re affected by significant factors like an ownership change or a company name change –  a wholesale change may be exactly what’s needed.  
As you consider how to approach a potential logo change, ask yourself these questions:

    • Does our current logo reflect our future business strategy?
    • Does it resonate with our future customer base in addition to current customers?
    • Does it convey a sense of “vitality”?  
    • Does it differentiate us from our competition?  … In a positive way?
    • Does it work well in “new media” uses?

If you find it hard to answer most or all of these questions in the affirmative … it’s probably time for a change.  How much change is up to you?


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