The Benefits of a Logo Refresh
Your logo is the face of your business. It needs to be functional and versatile, so that it is easily recognized anywhere it is reproduced — whether that's the large signage in front of your office that tells people they've found the right building; or in a "soft" advertising opportunity, such as a sponsorship banner, where your logo must stand out among 15 others. A strong logo will act as a "visual roadmap" — no matter where people encounter it, it will lead them back to your business.
I was recently hired to refresh the Southern Oregon Pediatrics logo, and bring it up-to-date. Overall, the concept is good. But the execution could use a bit of refinement to maximize visual impact.
The pros: The shooting star is a really lovely symbol that evokes a sense of child-like wonder, and hope, and it carries very strong positive connotations. It also holds appeal across age-groups (their clientele includes infants through adolescents), and is well-suited to represent their caring, nurturing, and inclusive practice. The mountains and shooting star are reversed out of a solid swath of color, which is a strong visual technique, and they are rendered in an "organic," artistic method, that feels flexible and child-friendly.
The cons: While the reverse-out technique is a strong one, it can also prove to be inflexible if there isn't a positive variation, or if it isn't "housed" in an effective way. In this example, the current mountains and star require a long, rectangular block of color in order to visually register. This places the emphasis on that color block, and pulls it away from the actual business name. The length of the overall logo is problematic, as the thin font used for the name will be lost when this logo shrinks for smaller applications. The typography used for "Southern Oregon Pediatrics" is a bit anemic when contrasted with this large block of color, and is not the best match for the illustration style. If this logo were to end up on a sponsorship banner, competing against other logos for attention, it would not likely be the easiest to read, and may find itself ignored.
When you look at a logo, there is a visual hierarchy of information that the eye scans in order to process what it's viewing. Ideally, whatever element best imparts the nature of the business within the first 3 seconds, should be the element with the most visual pull. In this example, the name of the business should be most prominent. It tells us very quickly that this is a pediatric office. The star and mountains do not tell us anything about the nature of this business, and function as an emotional element that helps connect the business to the clientele. While this is an important role, it should be in a visually supportive position, rather than taking center stage.
To create a stronger, more compelling logo, I am currently working with Southern Oregon Pediatrics to explore different typographic solutions and graphic treatments for the mountain and star, so that they support, rather than overpower the logo. The goal is to achieve a functional, versatile logo that is easily read and understood at any size. Below are a few of the concepts proposed to the group in the first round:
In my next post, I'll cover the logo review process, and upload more images of this logo refresh in progress.
Until next post,