Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes

written by
Tuesday, June 04, 2013

8 Website Navigation Tips Your Users Will LoveEXCERPT: Logos bombard us. Think clothing, cereal isles, TV commercials, and Internet ads. From the moment we wake to the moment we sleep, they're an ever-present part of our daily routine. As a person who designs company logos and brand identities, I'm okay with this. I know the importance of a good logo and understand the role it plays in our world.

Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes

Logos bombard us. Think clothing, cereal isles, TV commercials, and Internet ads. From the moment we wake to the moment we sleep, they're an ever-present part of our daily routine. As a person who designs company logos and brand identities, I'm okay with this. I know the importance of a good logo and understand the role it plays in our world.

According to Dharma Singh Khalsa, M.D., in his book Brain Longevity (1999), the average American sees 16,000 advertisements, logos, and labels in a day. Consider for a moment that this was nearly 15 years ago; can you imagine how much more we're subjected to today? With the adoption of the Internet and mobile devices, I would imagine that the number of brand marks we see daily has doubled if not tripled.

This had got me thinking. Assuming that the number of advertisements, logos, and labels Americans see in a day has grown significantly, does anyone even notice? I'll ask you. Are you aware that you're seeing 16,000+ brand marks each and every day? I wasn't.

I decided to run a quick and simple test that would further illustrate the constant presence of logos in my daily life. I spent the first 30-minutes of a normal working day (starting with the alarm clock) documenting the brand marks on the products I interact with, and this is what I found:

32 Logos in 30-Minutes


Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes
Experiment: 32 Logos in 30-Minutes

Many of you are no doubt thinking "32 logos... is that all. Big deal." In all actuality, it is a huge deal.

First off, all things even (which we know they are not) 32 logos per half-hour equates to 1,536 logos per day. Second, consider for a moment that I only documented the brand marks of those products I used and not those that I had seen but ignored - other foods, toiletries, books, TV shows, and clothing. When you factor in these missed opportunities, the overall number grows immensely, and all before even leaving my house.

Try it yourself. Maybe not as soon as you wake up, but what about right at this moment? Look around. How many logos can you see? How many will you remember seeing? What are your feelings towards those brands?

Conclusion

For many companies, a logo is the most recognizable element of their brand, and therefore it not only needs to be memorable, but be able to standout against the tens of thousands of other logos that consumers see daily. One perfect example of this is McDonalds. In fact, as you read this I'm betting that most of you will begin to picture golden arches. The same could be said of "Microsoft", "Apple", "FedEx", and "Target". Can you visualize their respective logos? I'm sure most can.

Now, granted, these are large companies with the necessary resources and budgets to continually push their brand in front us each and every day. But, that aside, they are also excellent examples of brands with simple, well-designed logos. And that's more of my point really.

I encourage every reader to review their company's logo (personal brands too) and determine if it, in itself, is unique enough, recognizable enough, and memorable enough to stand out in a crowd of all the other logos that cross our paths daily. If not, now might be good time to seek a logo redesign, or at least consult with a designer.

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3 Comments:

  1. Karl! Great post, I enjoyed going through the first 30 minutes of your day! We are bombarded with constant symbols of branding both visually and mentally. In addition to seeing logos, we hear slogans and jingles which all try to compete for our attention. It's important for any business to put together a cohesive brand which customers can immediately recognize and piece together.

    And just because you don't have the resources like Apple or FedEx to do it on their scale, doesn't mean you shouldn't already be thinking of how to do it within your means.

    Again, great post Karl!
    By Anonymous Jessica Guadiana on June 05, 2013
  2. Thanks for sharing, Jessica!

    I absolutely agree with you... Just because a business is small or isn't the size of an Apple or FedEx doesn't mean that they're off the hook here. All businesses, big or small, need to create ways of differentiating themselves from the pack and, more to your point, develop more cohesive and recognizable branding opportunities.
    By Blogger Karl Ribas on June 05, 2013
  3. Nice post. The ironic thing is that most people, if asked whether or not they were influenced in their purchasing decisions by logos, would respond "of course not, that stuff doesn't work on me". Naturally the opposite is true!

    I also think the use of favicons on web sites (I notice you have one) has a positive subliminal effect similar to that of logos. Would be interesting to see a comparison in the stats of a site with favicons and the same site without. It's also supposed to help with search engine rankings although I'm not sure if that's an urban myth.

    Cheers

    Ryan
    By Anonymous Ryan on July 05, 2013

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