Something is happening (again) in Logo Village. One of the dominant elements of brand image that cannot be kept as a secret from customers, the logo has been transforming at more and more companies. The direction is clear: companies representing very different industries get more simple, more streamlined appearances that fit the digital era better.
It has surprised almost no one that one of the big-big winners of the pandemic, the Pfizer pharmaceutical company that is known almost by billions of people, officially changed their logo in January 2021. The graphic design process has begun about two years ago, but when it became clear that the company was going to be the first one to present a safe and efficient vaccine, work has been accelerated. Instead of the previous logo with the company name written into an ellipse, the Brooklyn Team agency has designed a more open, more dynamic logo that can be better animated and that also included a virtual element resembling a DNA-helix.
The corporate logo is a key element of the new corporate identity, and by looking at it, it is not necessarily more simple, but it is more dynamic and it has more potential for animated and video appearances, that is for an appearance of crucial importance in our time.
Burger King, which is famous (also) for their professionally daring and unconventional advertising solutions, has also changed their logo. The identity element that has so far consisted of three elements contains only two elements from 2021. The flat, two-dimensional form has left the shading and the oblique text, and it is almost limited to a telegraphic statement, with simply portrayed hamburger buns.
Keep it simple, says the communication golden rule, and this is followed also by others from a graphical aspect. The legendary music magazine, Rolling Stone for example has lost its shading, and now their logo is a modest single-colored one. However, the logo change of the Hollywood studio, Warner Brothers is even more striking: three-dimensional edges, the glinting light, and the brand name written across the initials are all a thing of the past. The new WB has become a blue-white, simple, and clearly legible piece.
The trend is clear, and it did not start this year. Volkswagen was the first to start, then came Intel, Toyota, Nissan, Durex and also KIA. This year, even the Post-It Note joined this imaginary group.
Simplification took place in the elite league of luxury brands in the fashion world even earlier: old fancy logos representing also the traditional past have been replaced by simply written solutions of all capitals, without ornaments and additional graphic elements. What is more, the former YvesSaintLaurent has become only SAINT LAURENT.
One of the reasons for the Big Logo Transformation Fever is to be found in our digital lifestyle. We live a huge part of our days – work, holiday, love – staring at the screens, and we more often see brands like this. And on two-dimensional platforms, two-dimensional graphics simply look better, and they are even easier to mutate than their former variants.
The other reason is a social-cultural one: logos are always the imprints of the respective age, they are the corporate projections of zeitgeist. The bright colors and the three-dimensional effect fitted well the happy-optimistic-hedonistic zeitgeist of the 1980s. In the past, adornment was fine in the world of fashion. However, today, at the time of sustainability and climate protection, the honest corporate communication filled with all good intentions – purpose, I am looking at you – has been emphasized. The generation of consumers that has grown up and has become determining also looks at causes represented by a brand and selects not only their products or services. They are not interested in ostentation – in fact, they often identify it with wasting –, but in functionality and in the usefulness behind it.
One of the messages of more simple logos is that we do not have anything to hide, what you can see is what we are. Honest, easy to understand. The solid and available stars of the information and ever-expanding universe.
Of course, in the middle of all this, two-dimensional logos have alarmingly started to look alike – but this is another story.
Are you curious of how we redesigned a logo? Take a look at our design created for Remred!