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How do you define a Logo? And how many types of Logos are there?

Imagine you are a Graphic Designer or a curious soul for that matter seeking knowledge about the science behind What is a Logo? How many types of Logos are there? Which type of Logo will you be going to need for your brand or business? I am delighted to tell you I got you covered. In this blog post, I am going to answer these questions for you. Just read along and within a few minutes, you will have the necessary understanding of Logos and their types. When done reading this blog post I have a quick bonus for the Young Graphic Designers on How to present Logo Concepts to Clients?

Coming back to the topic, now it’s time to talk about the elephant in the room.

What is a Logo?

I know this is a topic that overwhelms most people. Honestly, there was a time when I was one of those people. Whenever I find myself in a situation where I need to decide what type of logo would be a good fit in any particular case, I always get cold feet, but you do not need to worry because I am going to explain this to you in the simplest way possible.

A logo is a visual representation of a brand’s identity, encompassing its values, personality, and message. It’s a strategic design element that helps establish recognition, builds trust, and differentiates a brand from others in the market.

Think of a logo as a condensed version of a brand’s DNA – it should convey the essence of the brand’s purpose, products, or services. A well-designed logo can evoke emotions, create associations, and even drive brand loyalty.

There are many types of Logos, which can be wordmarks (text-based), symbols, or a combination of both. They’re used consistently across various touchpoints, such as websites, social media, advertising, and packaging, to create a cohesive brand image.

A great logo is simple, yet distinctive and memorable. It should be scalable, versatile, and timeless, ensuring it looks good in different contexts and resolutions. On the topic of qualities & features of a logo, I have a recommendation for you to read What are the traits of Good Logo Design? For a Graphic Designer, the goal should be to craft logos that not only look amazing but also tell a story, convey a message, and resonate with the target audience.

The 7 Types of Logos.

As of my knowledge till the time of this writing and also based on their functionality, design approach, style, and visual representation logos can be categorized into 7 major types.

Monogram or Letter Mark Logo.

A Monogram or Letter Mark logo is a special symbol made from letters. It’s like a shortcut for a brand’s name.

Think of it like an initials-only logo. Instead of writing out the full name of a company or person, a Monogram or Letter Mark uses just a few letters to represent them.

For example, the famous fashion brand “Gucci” has a Monogram logo that combines by interlocking the letter “G”. And the fast-food chain “McDonald’s” has a Letter Mark logo that uses the letter “M”.

These logos are often simple, yet stylish and memorable. They help people recognize a brand quickly and easily, even if they don’t see the full name.

So, Monogram and Letter Mark logos are like a secret handshake or a quick nod to a brand’s identity!

What is a Logo? What are the 7 types of Logos?
Logos of Gucci & McDonald’s as examples of Monogram / Letter Mark Logo

Wordmark Logo.

You may have a slight idea related to some logos that are just words, like the name of a company or brand. That’s a Wordmark Logo! It’s a type of logo that uses text only, without any symbols or icons.

Think of it like a signature – it’s a unique way of writing the name of a brand or company that’s recognizable and memorable. Just like how your signature is unique to you, a Wordmark Logo is unique to a brand.

For example, the logos for Google, Facebook, and Coca-Cola are all Wordmark Logos. They’re just the names of the companies, but they’re written in a special way that makes them stand out.

As a Graphic Designer, with years of mainstream experience, I can tell you that creating a Wordmark Logo requires a lot of creativity and attention to detail. We need to choose the right font, color, and arrangement of letters to make it look cool and professional.

So, that’s what a Wordmark Logo is in a nutshell! It’s a simple yet effective way to brand a company or product, and it’s all about the text.

What is a Logo? What are the 7 types of Logos?
Logos of Google, Facebook and Coca Cola as examples of Wordmark Logo

Pictorial Mark Logo.

A Pictorial Mark Logo is a picture or symbol that represents a business, brand, or company. Just like how a picture of a face can represent a person, a Pictorial Mark logo is a picture that represents a brand or business.

Think of it like a logo that doesn’t need words to tell its story. It’s like a little icon that helps people remember who you are. And just like how you recognize a friend’s face, people will recognize your business’s logo and remember what you’re all about!

For example, the Apple logo is just an apple picture, but it’s so well-known that you immediately think of the company and its products. Another example could be the Golden Arches of McDonald’s. These are Pictorial Mark logos that are easy to recognize and remember, and they help people know what to expect from those companies.

What is a Logo? What are the 7 types of Logos?
Logos of McDonald’s and Apple as examples of Pictorial Mark Logo

Abstract Logo Mark.

An abstract logo mark is a symbol or icon that doesn’t represent a specific object or image, but instead, conveys a feeling, idea, or concept.

Think of it like a puzzle piece that represents a brand’s personality, values, or message. It’s a unique and creative way to visually represent a brand, without using obvious or literal images.

For example, the logos for Pepsi (the circle with a swoosh) and Adidas (the three stripes) are abstract logo marks. They don’t represent a specific object, but they evoke a sense of movement, energy, and dynamism.

Abstract logo marks are often simple, yet distinctive and memorable. They require a lot of creativity and experimentation to design but can be incredibly effective in building a brand’s visual identity!

What is a Logo? What are the 7 types of Logos?
Logos of Pepsi and Adidas as examples of Abstract Logo Mark

Mascot Logo.

A Mascot Logo is a friendly, cartoon-style character that represents a brand or company. It’s like a visual ambassador that helps people connect with a brand on a more personal level.

It’s like a lovable spokesperson that embodies the brand’s personality and values. Mascot Logos are often used to make a brand more approachable, relatable, and memorable.

For example, Tony the Tiger (Kellogg’s Frosted Flakes), the Kool-Aid Man, and the Michelin Man are all Mascot Logos. They’re fun, recognizable, and help people associate the brand with positive feelings.

Mascot Logos can be a great way to build brand recognition and create an emotional connection with customers. They’re often used in advertising, packaging, and marketing materials to make a brand stand out and be more engaging!

What is a Logo? What are the 7 types of Logos?
Logos of Tony the Tiger, Michelin Man and Kool-Aid Man as examples of Mascot Logo

The Combination Mark.

A Combination Mark Logo is a logo that combines a symbol or icon with text, usually the brand name. This type of logo offers the best of both worlds, as it provides a visual representation (the symbol or icon) and a clear identification (the text).

It is like a logo sandwich – the symbol or icon is the juicy filling, and the text is the bread that holds it all together!

Combination Mark Logos are popular because they provide a clear and concise message. They offer flexibility in terms of layout and design. They can be used in various formats, for example, horizontal, vertical, stacked. This type of logo can effectively communicate the brand’s message and identity, while also providing versatility in terms of design and layout.

Burger King and Pepsi are a few of many examples of The Combination Mark Logos.

What is a Logo? What are the 7 types of Logos?
Logos of Pepsi and Burger King as examples of The Combination Mark Logo

The Emblem

Finally, it’s time for the last one on the list, The Emblem. An emblem is a type of logo that’s like a symbol and text all mixed into one. It’s a design where the text is often integrated into the symbol or icon, creating a cohesive and harmonious whole.

It is more like a badge or a crest – it’s a logo that’s often more detailed and intricate, with the text and symbol working together to create a unique and recognizable identity.

Emblems are often used by organizations, companies, and even sports teams to create a strong and bold visual identity. They can be used on their own or in combination with other design elements to create a powerful brand image.

The Starbucks logo, The Harley-Davidson logo, and The NFL logo are mentioned every time when there is any discussion regarding The Emblem Logo.

Emblems are a great way to create a logo that’s both visually striking and meaningful, and they can be used in a variety of contexts to represent a brand or organization.

What is a Logo? What are the 7 types of Logos?
Logos of Starbucks Coffee, Harley Davidson, and NFL as examples of The Emblem Logo

Now let’s wrap things up. In conclusion, all types of logos serve a purpose unique to their nature and capabilities. If you are reading this as a client and might be looking to get a logo designed for your business. I want to recommend that you take a moment and sit with the designer or the agency you are working with. Explain your business, your requirements, your preferences, most importantly your target audience and customer. By providing this information you are helping the designer, or the agency, create a better brand identity for your business that works and resonates with your audience. If you are a designer, I hope this blog post helped you clear things up.

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