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Gaston Yagmourian: Confusion between logos and brands


A logo carries content that goes way beyond a visual experience alone. A logo is a brand but the problem with a logo is that it's not conducive to a rich and immersive brand experience.

The point of my original post is that the term 'logo' hasn't been properly considered in the context of contemporary brands. I argue that the problem is embedded in the term and that the use of the term exacerbates the problem. Instead, I propose a system of brand-marks that demonstrates a much more flexible and accurate way to handle any type of brand experience.

The experience of a brand determines a brand's identity. A brand experience is determined by three types of marks: linguistic, material and gestural. If a logo was only a visual experience it would be a subset of material marks; it wouldn't be capable of carrying meaning and no identity could be established.

The reason logos (in the traditional sense) are no longer seen as important is that a logo is a very limited experience and a logo that operates independently of other related brand elements isn't capable of 'carrying' or 'cuing' a brand effectively.

A logo is one small set of mark types, whereas a brand is a concert of many and various mark types that reflect, determine and mediate an entire experience.


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