The Use Of Language In Logo Design

Content is third in the sequence of recognition behind shape and color because the brain takes more time to process language. Letterforms can be very powerful in creating content and meaning. The use of initials as an identifying mark has been around for centuries since medieval kingdoms became economic enterprises. Letterforms are often abstracted to create clever symbols which act as metaphor for the core brand positioning. These symbols combine a strong form and shape that influences content.

Many logos consist of only the name of the destination without any iconic symbol. These wordmarks or logotypes range in complexity from straightforward typesetting of an existing font, to a completely custom typographic mark. The most effective wordmarks have something unique embedded or changed in the typography that create metaphor and imply meaning. It can be a clever graphic inserted into the word, a texture applied to the letters, or the transformation of a letter(s).

Too often travel and destination brands rely on cliches such as script typography to denote luxury, even though it doesn’t necessarily distinguish or get to the heart of the brand. It's not that these logos aren’t nice on the surface, but do they really speak to the core of the brand message? It's hard to understand why so many believe that script type is the only way to attract a luxury customer.


If you’ve ever had the pleasure of staying at the Lake Placid Lodge, the script type should confuse you. The Lake Placid Lodge is designed in the Adirondack Great Camp tradition. The script type has little to do with the resort’s heritage and brand position.