Some corporations succeed when it comes to logo redesigns. Earlier this year, American Airlines gave their airplane rudders an abstract art makeover in response to a massive employee survey, and the redesign at Staples was strategically part of a much larger rebranding effort. Some bomb (EY). Some are so subtle you can barely tell the difference (Google, Yahoo!).
Related: 17 Logos We Love
Meanwhile, more than 500,000 new businesses launch each month in the United States, according to a Kauffman Foundation Report. And with that comes 500,000 newly created logos, each vying for the consumer's attention. We asked for your favorite logos and the results are in Entrepreneur's Top Logos of 2014: Reader's Edition. We noted your favorite corporate icons, and then took a closer look at submissions from small businesses.
The Apple and Nike swoosh aside, when it comes to new brands, logos are valuable first impressions to the market. Colors, geomantic qualities and all the elements of design have to be on point.
As we reviewed and analyzed your submissions, we saw a pattern of categories emerge:
The Seven Cs of Startup Logos
Creative - Is it artistic?
Cutting edge - Does it have innovative design?
Cute - Does it make you say "aww"?
Clean - Is there beauty in its simplicity?
Communicative - Does it compact information about the company into one logo?
Chic - Is there something fashionable about it?
Close-to-home - It needn't be a multinational or an online service with global reach. Some logos from regional businesses have major local pull.
We filtered through the entries and picked three leading logos for each category. Because beauty is in the eye of the beholder, consider this list of logotypes as more of a peer-inspiration board as you develop your own brand identity:
TOP 3 CREATIVE
A marketing platform for businesses to find the right athletic sponsor in Lincoln, Neb.
A brand that specializes in athletic footgear.
Logo Chatter: Its bright monogram takes on more power when juxtaposed onto darker, grittier athlete gear.
A web design, SEO and branding agency.
Logo Chatter: There's a deepened appreciation for its logo mascot's silhouette when you click "About Us" on their webpage.
Related: What Does the Color of Your Logo Say About Your Company? (Infographic)
TOP 3 CUTTING EDGE
Features full-length workout videos and meal plans online.
A software and IT services company in Sunnyvale, Calif. It was acquired by SAP AG for $4.3 billion in 2012.
High Touch Group
A technology consulting and public relations firm.
TOP 3 CUTEST
A personal concierge offering house cleaning, dry cleaning, wash & fold, and dog walking services from local professionals.
At Home Veterinary Services
Mobile veterinary clinic services straight to your home.
United Shoes of America
A children's shoe brand that is dedicated to manufacturing all products in the United States.
TOP 3 COMMUNICATIVE
With custom search and filter tools, users can search specials and events at local restaurants and bars, or follow the businesses they care about to receive a custom newsfeed of specials & events.
Provides detailed stat tracking and instructional videos from a PGA Professional to help users improve their game.
A New York City coffee chain that emphasizes friendly baristas and a Gregular loyalty program.
TOP 3 CLEAN
Helps you book entertainers, musicians, party planners, rentals, venues for weddings and other life events.
L&A Lavin & Associates
Bronx, N.Y.-based Certified public accountants.
A real-time analytics platform for buyers, sellers and marketplaces in the programmatic advertising space.
TOP 3 CHIC
Men's and women's luxury clothing designer.Related: Breaking Into Fashion? Network and Don't Give Up
An online service that regularly provides premium underwear and socks for men.
The Tutbury Present Company
A independent card and gift shop in the historic village of Tutbury, England.
TOP 3 CLOSE-TO-HOME
A regional airline based in Terrace, British Columbia
A coworking spot and networking organization with a mission to boost the tech industry in Scranton, Pa.
A Detroit moving and delivery services company.
Related: 17 Logos We Love
Related: 5 Signs that You Need a New Logo