Two questions to which you will probably answer yes. Has your company got a logo? And does your company have a presence on one or more social media platforms?
And another question, to which you may well answer no. When designing your logo, did you think about how it would look on those social media sites?
They’re square, or very close to it. And the chances are that your logo isn’t, or that if it is, it’s too large to look good in a very small square.
The dimensions you’re able to play with are very limited:
- 73 pixels square in twitter
- 200px wide by up to 600px high in Facebook
Your Facebook logo won’t display at this size in most browsers so you need a logo that reads well at half that size.
A good social media logo has the following characteristics:
- It’s square
- If it has text, there’s not much of it and it’s large and easy to read
- It’s recognisable as the company in question’s logo
- It has good contrast
So how do other organisations do it?
There are three main ways which organisations seem to adapt their logo to social media, particularly twitter:
- They already have a square logo and use that.
- They have two logos, one rectangular and one square.
- They crop, shrink or otherwise adapt their existing rectangular logo to make it square. This can work but only if handled carefully, as we shall see.
1. Logos which are already square so work well in social media
- 79 nights has a square logo with large, readable text.
- Gap‘s iconic logo has always been square (let’s ignore their brief blip with another experimental logo).
- Apple‘s app store uses the same icon on the iPhone and in twitter, although interestingly apple themselves don’t seem to be on twitter – their logo would work perfectly if they were.
- WordPress has an easily identifiable square logo that works well in social media.
2. A rectangular logo plus a square version for social media
- Speckyboy magazine has a clever logo that reinforces the idea of specs.
- Duran Duran have stripped their logo to a pink ‘D’, recognisable to any fans from the 1980s.
- The Labour Party simply uses its Rose icon.
- Business Link West Midlands removes all text and just uses the thought bubbles that make up part of its logo – risky as this may only be recognised by those who already know their brand, but it seems to work.
- Compass Design (yes, us!) have two versions of their logo – a square and a rectangular one.
3. Rectangular logos that have been adapted or cropped to fit the space
- The women’s organisation‘s square logo is a cropped version of its normal logo, just showing the letter ‘W’.
- 38 degrees rotate their logo (possibly by 38 degrees?) which is a clever play on their name but slightly difficult to read due to the small text.
- Marks and Spencer, surprisingly, use a version of the familiar M&S logo, but with added text and graphics which reduce legibility and recognition.
- Microsoft play safe by simply shrinking their logo and centring it in a square, again with reduction in legibility.
So, if you’ve decided you need a social media- friendly logo, you’ll need to think about the following:
- Is there an element of your logo that is recognisable on its own?
- Can the dimensions of your logo be changed?
- If your logo consists of text, can it be placed on two lines and if so, it is still legible at small sizes?
- Can you abbreviate your company name and represent that in the style of your logo (think of Marks and Spencer being abbreviated to M&S)
- Is it time to redesign your logo, bringing it up to date and either making it square or creating two versions?
Once you’ve done this, the chances are you’ll find your new square logo come in handy in more places than just social media sites. It could free up space on your business card. It could grab people’s attention on signs or adverts. And it can reinforce your brand too, by representing it in another, different but related way.
It’s a great opportunity to rethink the way you’re representing your company visually, so make the most of it!
If you need help redesigning or adapting your logo, Compass Design can help. Take a look at our graphic design portfolio for examples of logo work we have done. We can also give you advice on harnessing social media channels such as twitter and Facebook to market your business online. To find out more, call us on 07898 378178, email firstname.lastname@example.org or use our contact form.