All time greatest logo fails

…And five lessons you can learn from them. In the first of our Design Matters series, we look at how logos can make or break your business. You want to be noticed – but for the right reasons…

Lesson #1:  Negative space, negative perception?

The human brain is an amazing thing – constantly looking for patterns it has seen before, it automatically completes shapes that aren’t always there. Negative space is a fundamental design concept which, in talented hands, can be stunningly effective.

Here’s how it should be done …

Eds-Electric-Logo              FedEx-Logo-Great-example-of-Negative-Space

And here’s how it shouldn’t…


Lesson #2: Sex is everywhere in advertising

Men think of sex on average about every 7 seconds (apparently). Which might explain these subconscious cock-ups…

Tip 1: Avoid stick men

11-logo-fail        clinica-dental-san-marcelino

Tip 2: Don’t get lost in translation Here’s Swedish property firm Locum’s attempt to win more business (perhaps it worked).


Lesson #3: Looking at the world from a different angle is great, but…

If everyone else says don’t do it, then don’t do it. We’ve discussed the design below at length in the office and we just can’t work out how it even got to the concept stage, let alone past it.


Lesson #4:  It’s staring you in the face, but you won’t always see it

The next one is strange because it is, in many ways, beautifully conceived and executed…  …but once you think of the top two hands as hair on a head, you can only see the third hand as a face-palm. Maybe the designers knew it would end up in tears for Brazil?


Lesson #5: You don’t always get what you pay for

Sometimes you get much, much more…Arguably, the most iconic logo of all time, Nike’s ‘Swoosh’ was designed by student Carolyn Davidson in 1971. She’d done casual work for the company’s founders, Phillip Knight and Bill Bowerman, before and they needed a logo for the launch of their new running shoes named after the Greek goddess of victory. When Knight saw the logo he said, ‘Don’t love it, but it will grow on me.’ Davidson charged just $35 for her work.



For branding that will boost your business, talk to Voice on 01579 349 910

See these designs and more discussed in detail here >>