Sometimes, minimalism is the best way to go, especially when it comes to using creative design for powerful branding. Often underestimated by businesses, a single letter logo is an effective way to leave a lasting impression on your audience’s mind. If you’re creating your brand’s visual identity, you typically have two options to choose from – letter based and symbol based logos. While both of them are highly effective and used by famous brands across the world, one letter logos are trending and well known for their stronger (and instant) brand recognition.
In this blog, we’ll cover why single letter logos are powerful, along with a list of inspiring examples to help you create your own.
Benefits of Using a One Letter Logo
Here are 3 strong reasons for using a single letter logo for your brand.
- Simple & Memorable
Instead of distracting the audience with additional imagery and wordmark, single-letter logos keep things cleaner and more focused. Although you may still add some design elements, you’ll start with a simple concept. Additionally, since there’s only one letter, the audience can easily remember the logo when properly executed. They don’t have to remember many letters, as is the case with wordmark logos.
Probably the most important benefit of having a single letter logo is its scalability. Scalable logos mean shape-shifting logos that can change in size, complexity and even color to fit and adapt to wherever they are used. With users’ devices ranging from smart phones and tablets to smart watches and smart bracelets, it’s imperative to have a simple logo with size-shifting capabilities.
When you choose a tricky one letter logo design, it’ll help customers think of your brand and its products or services as soon as they see it. While single letter logos may appear seemingly simple, they’re often hard to design. Aside from using the right font, style and color palette, you also need to ensure that it’s distinctly different from other brands—even if they aren’t your competitors.
Launched by Patrick McDonald as a single food stand in Monrovia, California, McDonald’s is now the ninth wealthiest company in the world, with over 35,000 restaurants in 120 different countries and a net worth of $39.1 billion. Much of the credit for this success goes to its striking logo design. Although the logo has been revamped multiple times before it underwent the final changes in 2003, the famous Golden Arches remained part of its design since 1968. While the golden color represents the famous arches of its first franchised restaurant, the red color depicts the food industry of this company.
Founded in 1947 by Chung Ju-Yung, the Hyundai Motor Company, then called Hyundai Engineering and Construction Company, didn’t develop its first vehicle until 1968. Today, it is one of the top 100 most valuable brands in the world and has rapidly grown with innovative engineering technologies. When you first look at the current Hyundai logo, you’ll notice that it looks like an italicized “H” character. However, if you take a detailed look, you’ll notice that it represents a silhouette of two people shaking hands. This depicts the company’s strong relationship with its customers. This also describes the company’s vision – Delivering high-quality vehicles and support to all customers.
The name Pinterest is an amalgamation of two words – “pin” and “interest”. This is basically because the social media site allows its users to pin things of their interest on to a board. Since the word “pin” and the act of pinning play such an important part in the brand’s identity, the logo too has a pin design disguised in the letter “P”. The current Pinterest logo, which was introduced in 2016, features an iconic emblem and a wordmark placed on its right. Both parts feature the same blood red and white color palette, though in different styles of lettering. The long and pointed tail of the letter “P” on the Pinterest emblem is designed like a needle, which people use to fix photos and images to their boards. The red and white color combination stands for love, passion, and curiosity, the three major qualities of the Pinterest users from all over the world.
Founded in 2004 by Mark Zuckerberg and some of his fellow Harvard College students and roommates, Facebook is now THE most recognizable online social media and social networking platform. Its logo underwent a sequence of changes, although many people are oblivious to this fact unless they’re told about it. With each redesign, the logo became more minimalistic.
Denoted by a crooked lowercase letter “F” placed on a solid blue circle, Facebook is one of the most talked about brands in the world. Although the small “F” stands for the brand’s name Facebook, it also symbolizes connecting friends and peers. There’s also a GIF going viral on every social media platform, where the tiny “F” icon stands for mobile addiction of millions of FB users around the world. Looks like Mark Zuckerberg and his creative team had predicted the future before choosing this logo.
Founded by Marc Randolphand and Reed Hastings in 1997, Netflix is one of the world’s largest entertainment companies, featuring popular TV series, numerous documentaries and a huge collection of feature films covering a range of languages, cultures and genres. Currently, it has over 208 million paid memberships in over 190 countries worldwide. After undergoing a number of changes since its inception, the current Netflix logo looks like a ribbon, folded over itself to depict a solitary “N”. The color red in the logo represents energy, joy, love and authority. The iconic one letter logo can easily be associated with Netflix, and symbolizes the brand’s connections and unprecedented innovation in the home entertainment industry.
True to the “less is more” proverb, a one letter logo is a timeless identity of a brand. The above examples are a living testimony to the facts that single letters, acronyms, and initials can build your reputation in the industry. All you need to do is ditch the auto logo generators and opt for a customized logo designing company.
PJ has a background in management consulting and software development. At DesignBro, he combines both. Personal favorite brand of PJ is Jeep.