Logos vs. Faces • Science Tells Us Which is Best
So you want to create an identity for your business? Science tells us which type of images work best.
HINT: It’s not the ones most people use.
Let’s talk about how we – how our brains perceive images, words, messages.
And how that affects us when it’s time to set up our marketing, our advertising and our branding.
Neuro-scientists have established pretty conclusively – beyond any doubt – that the human brain / mind / psychology reacts to faces much more positively than to things.
Babies as early as two-weeks old show a marked preferences for faces over things.
Now, before you guys jump in and say, “awww, that’s only true for females rather than males…” No, that’s true for all – both genders – from the beginning.
It is true that males prefer “Things Over People” more than females do.
But across the board, the human brain reacts – even if it’s at a subconscious level – to images of faces much more positively, much more strongly, and much more predictably than the human brain responds to abstract ideas.
So how does that affect us?
I was looking at a potential client today that needs to update their branding. (Now I’m not going to go into what branding is and is not.) Let’s just talk about the kind of thing that they currently have.
Currently, their brand is this very abstract, geometrical, obviously very-high-tech – I don’t know – series of embedded letter “L’s”, it looks like.
Nice colors. I mean, the colors are not terribly interesting. But that’s kinda of tertiary significance.
The primary significant that you want with your imaging is something that is arresting to the eye and utterly unforgettable and completely identifiable and unique.
And they’re nowhere close to that.
Secondarily is what the image actually contains. And tertiary is the colors itself.
These folks have an extremely abstract logo. And what their brand is – is anybody’s guess. So they clearly do need help.
Were I advising them – if they hired me – I was gonna say, “Look, the first thing you’ve gotta do is, you want your image to be something that people instantly relate to. And the human brain instantly relates to faces.”
And in addition to faces – layered on top of the face itself – is a personality.
What we’ve gotta do primarily – number 1 thing – is we’ve got to connect the idea of a personality with a face and character – connect it in the minds of your target audience – with you.
So when they think about YOU – Mr. Company – what they think about is – they think about a person.
And it doesn’t have to be You the CEO or You the Founder, or You even The Spokesperson.
But they’ve got to have an image – a facial image – and a personality that they feel good about, that they can connect with your offering. Whether it’s a service or a product or a company or a club.
People will remember a person with a personality – with a distinctive look and distinctive, relatable personality – long after they’ll remember some sort of abstract image with – you know – well-designed fonts and colors and geometric logo. Those things just don’t have the same kind of cognitive power that faces and personalities have.
When it’s time to create that image for your offering – whether it’s a company, a product a service, whatever it is – rather than going first to the people who design abstract images and they worry about color, think about giving a face and a personality to your offering.
That can be someone who stands for the offering like Colonel Sanders stands for KFC. Like Jack the Clown stands for Jack-in-the-Box restaurants. Like the Geico Gecko stands for Geico Insurance.
But it’s got to be something with a recognizable face. (There’s sound neurological reasons for that.) And a personality that we both relate to and admire.
Remember, if your audience doesn’t feel it, they aren’t gonna love it.
See you tomorrow.