by Lara Blake | Guest Contributor | DIGITAL MARKETING
The phrase “a picture is worth a thousand words” is thought to go back to the 20th century and was coined by Frederick R. Barnard, who wrote a piece “commending the effectiveness of graphics in advertising.”
In today's world of technology and smartphones, it is more important than ever to ensure a company's main feature piece - their logo or icon stands out among the crowd and is transferable into the digital world of smartphones, tablets, and desktops.
Below, we take a look at some of the world's most iconic logo designs of the 20th Century that have not only survived but are absolutely thriving in the digital age. These logos are ones that have evolved throughout time whilst maintaining their instantly recognisable style and uniqueness.
The instantly recognisable red and yellow circles have always been unmistakably linked to the credit card company, however in 2016, Mastercard decided to drop the name from the logo altogether, leaving just the red and yellow overlapping circles.
The aim was to keep the familiarity of the brand whilst trailblazing into the digital age and making the logos simpler and cleaner on smartphones, tablets, and desktops all over the globe.
As we know the majority of people do their banking via apps, Mastercard needed something bold which would stand out on a crowded smartphone home screen.
The icon is now remarkably simple and is also flat which is an ongoing mobile app trend for 2021.
Quite obviously the apple logo must be one of the most iconic symbols of the modern era. Originally a picture of Isaac Newton sitting under a tree, the logo has developed and evolved into a symbol that resonates with practically anyone who uses a computer.
It is clean, crisp, and uncomplicated and is ironically a fruit which would seem to have nothing to do with technology. However, this logo is instantly recognisable.
When we speak to people, we can instantly tell the type of person they are by asking “do you use a pc or a mac.”
Although it was originally Steve Jobs who came up with the name Apple and the original idea it was actually a chap called Rob Janoff who was a known specialist in corporate identity and branding who was brought in to give the icon a more corporate feel.
This particular logo hails all the way back to at least 1927 where it can be seen at the beginning of a film called “The Jazz Singer”.
There have been 13 main logos and over 200 variations of the Warner Brothers logo however the Giant W and B and Shield in the clouds has always remained consistent.
The above logo is actually logo 11 and can be seen at the beginning of some of the batman movies. The Warner Brothers logo is absolutely timeless.
Interestingly, it is reported that if you are involved in the production of a Warner Brothers film you can choose which logo you would like to utilise. Ben Affleck chose Saul Bass’s version number 10 for his film Argo.
Who can resist the golden arches? Instantly recognizable when speeding along the motorway on a road trip, the McDonald’s logo is bright, and evokes a feeling of warmth and comfort.
Although the brand portfolio has changed over the years the logo itself has always remained the same which is a testament to the clever design.
McDonald’s was one of the first logos which used a flat icon which we see trending in modern design - other logos using the same format are Instagram and pizza hut.
Jim Schneider was hired back in 1962 to make a logo again with a more corporate feel.
Take a look at the most recent McDonald’s marketing campaign recently seen in the UK which has maximised perfectly with the country’s latest lockdowns! - Great job McDonald’s.
Instantly recognisable and on the first page of billions of smartphones around the world, the Instagram logo has to be on the list of one of the all-time favourite logos.
The original polaroid has been transformed into a bright neon icon. It is said that the idea behind the retro polaroid camera was to bring back memories and nostalgia of childhood and times past.
A family favourite - The Disney logo must be one of the oldest and longest running Logos of all time and the signature of the Great Walt himself is still ongoing to this day.
This Logo has changed and evolved over the years however Walt's signature remains.
Again, the logo is not only recognisable but like some of the others on the list it evokes a feeling of warmth and childhood memories. The castle in the background is said to be a silhouette of a famous Bavarian castle Neuschwanstein castle.
Can you see it? The tiny little arrow in the middle of the E and the X?
This clever addition to the new logo is meant to represent forward direction, speed, and precision. The clever use of the negative space is why FedEx is on the list of iconic logo designs.
This logo was created in 1994 by Lindon Leader a designer who famously liked to make use of “the white space.”
Although not as famous as some of the others on the list, we could not pass this logo by. Similar to the previous logo on the list, it has a hidden meaning inside the logo.
The Baskin Robbins logo has a hidden meaning. If you take a look a little closer, it actually denotes the number 31 which is exactly the amount of ice cream flavours Baskin Robbins has - genius!
Of course, we simply cannot pass by the famous Nike tick or swoosh as it is also known! This famous logo was designed by a lady called Carolyn Davidson, a young lady who was trying to make her way in the design world.
The reason this logo works is it is a modern creation of the Greek goddess and her outstretched wings! This logo is one of the most simple, clean, and unique logos we have seen in this era.
A logo that most of us use every day, the Google logo is timeless. It is bright and fun and synonymous with the world wide web.
In 2015 Google implemented its “biggest update in 16 years” it was also the first time google became animated. Ruth Kedar is behind the Logo above; she was approached in 199a by the two founders who asked her to create a new version of the logo.
In conclusion, there are billions of logos worldwide, however it takes a special few to really stand the test of time and manage to evolve throughout time while remaining consistent.