Creating a consistent brand, whether its for personal or corporate branding, can be a key feature to making you or your company stand out as a reputable source of information. For this article I’ll be taking a look how one search engine conference uses this for, all of it’s visual branding.
In December of 2006 Danny Sullivan announced his SMX Search Engine Conference series, would be starting in 2007. While everything wasn’t in place at the time of the announcement, the site did come to life a few weeks later with this logo.
The logo used the same color palette as the existing Search Engine Land to help the audience make the mental association.
The SMX conference series used a similar but not identical image as a favicon for the website:
If you aren’t familiar with a favicon it’s a small square graphic that appears in the address bar of newer browsers. It also appears as the icon for a URL if you have bookmarked it. This is often useful if on toolbars where the name has been removed to save space, see if you can identify the links from just the favicon images on my toolbar shown below.
Another very similar but not identical version is used by SMX for off-site avatars. This logo can be found on the Flickr Profile, Twitter Profile, and Youtube profile.
Here are some tips on how you can apply this to your website:
- Use a consistent color palette, using red on your website, but blue on your Youtube page, and Orange on your blog can create brand confusion.
- Most website logo’s or mastheads are horizontal, talk with your designer to see if you can get a square version or use a isolated section of your logo that can be cropped into a square.
- Favicon’s are really small (usually 24 pixels by 24 pixels), try to use something that is still readable or will have a visual impact at that size. Here’s a free tool I use to convert graphics into favicon format.
- Keep a list of all the places you have a profile or use the logo, if you change or update you want to keep everything as in sync as possible.
- Try to get a print or high res version of your logo, you can use it for your business cards, but you can also put it in a press section of your website. Go through the effort of creating a few different sizes (small, medium, large) in both horizontal and vertical orientations. Not everyone knows how to create, reduce and sharpen graphics, if you do it for them you have a better chance of controlling the quality if they do use it and link to you.