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Logos Should Have Big Text

Logos should have big text, text that’s easy to read even when the logo is small. That’s yet one more criteria of logo design.

And as much as possible, logos should have short words from the company or product name.

A few years ago, I designed a logo for my local home brew club, Brandon Bootleggers. It was a practical logo with bold text. It wasn’t the most artistic logo, but the artwork was original, not stolen off the internet. And it was free work, something I did for the new brew club as it was getting started. The club steering committee came up with another logo that violated several rules of good logo design. No big deal. It’s a local club, non-profit.

Sea-of-Logos Example

Today, I saw a post from the Brandon Foundation highlighting the sponsors for an event. It included the Brandon Bootleggers logo. It was hard to read.

Here’s the sea of logos Brandon Foundation published. Look at the second one on the top row, Brandon Bootleggers Home Brew Club.

Logo Study Broken

Here’s the same graphic but with my version of the Bootleggers logo.

Logo Study Fixed

That’s a lot easier to read.

Big Text

In fact, this sea of logos makes for a study in logo design. Some logos are very easy to read and therefore do a good job of branding the company:

  • Bonefish Grill
  • Longhorn Steakhouse
  • Outback Steakhouse
  • Stonewood
  • Livy O’s Catering Co.

Several logos have extra words and some long words, but the designers selectively made some words bigger, so they work in this example:

  • Romano’s Macaroni Grill
  • PRP Wine
  • The Bridges
  • Stonewood

Others are just hard to read:

  • Cater Tampa
  • Nothing Bundt Cake
  • Food (The one word is big, but what’s being branded here?)
  • Bootleggers Home Brew Club

So my version of the Bootleggers logo isn’t high art, but it works when it’s small and displayed in a sea of logos. This illustrates an important rule when designing logos:

  • Logos should be readable when small.

Follow Up

A few months after this post was first published, I saw another sea-of-logos example. Read the post Logos Should Be Readable in a Sea of Logos.