‘When you play the game of logos, you win or you die.’
(WARNING: Exactly one spoiler if you are not caught up on the current season of Game of Thrones).
Death in this instance is not literal, but failing to find the proper logo for your company means that your business could miss out on instant brand recognition. By winning the game of logos you will prevent your company from taking after the faceless men of Braavos and can take a seat on the Iron Throne.
In Westeros, each great family has a sigil to represent their house. Fans of the show can easily connect house sigils to the proper family. Take, for instance, House Targaryen, whose sigil is a dragon with three heads. This sigil is very on brand for the Targaryen family, famous for conquering Westeros with their fire-breathing dragons.
The only known (to most), living Targaryen, Daenerys of the House Targaryen, the First of Her Name, The Unburnt, Queen of the Andals, the Rhoynar and the First Men, Queen of Meereen, Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea, Protector of the Realm, Lady Regnant of the Seven Kingdoms, Breaker of Chains and Mother of Dragons, utilizes her house sigil in a number of ways. You can find the sigil on her ship’s sails, outfitted on her soldiers, sealed on the ravens she sends, and incorporated onto her everyday fashion. If anyone in Westeros spotted one of Daeny’s ships in the distance, they would instantly recognize her sigil and start to worry if their house insurance covers dragon fire.
Just like the houses of Westeros, every company needs a logo to represent their brand. A successful logo is easy to recognize, versatile, and memorable.
Here are a few tips that companies, and the houses of Westeros, should follow when creating a new logo or sigil.
Keep it Simple
Simplicity will make your logo more versatile, which will allow you to use your logo on different media from letterheads to website favicons. Simple logos have a better chance of lasting over a long period of time. House Tyrell used this simple equation when creating their house sigil. Great wealth and gardening skills equals sigil of a golden rose. The Moak Group’s logo is also extremely versatile. We’ve used it in countless different graphics to represent everything from an Olympic torch to a shark fin, allowing us to be creative while staying on brand.
Make it Clever
Some of the most successful logos include a hidden symbolism. A popular example is the Amazon.com logo:
notice how the arrow points out two letters, representing that Amazon sells everything from ‘A’ to ‘Z’. House Bolton could have benefited from a clever rebrand. A house sigil of a flayed man is not a good look and does not instill trust amongst allies.
Colors are key
Colors can be symbolic and have multiple meanings, and have a unique connection to our moods and emotions. For example, red can be associated with a fiery mood, but on the other end can represent warmth. By sharing the same color as blood, it’s commonly associated with violence. House Lannister’s sigil colors, red and gold could represent their nature towards violence and their wealth. In corporate America, companies intentionally choose colors that inspire a certain emotion. Apple’s simple gray logo exudes calm and dependability, while Virgin’s red cursive is cool and exciting. The color of your logo should get right to the bottom of what you are as a company.
Keep it timeless
Great logos can withstand the test of time. They do not depend on current trends, pop culture references, or clichés. By avoiding current design trends, you can help prevent your logo from going out of date. Though many have believed the near-mythical direwolves went extinct, the Starks stood by their sigil and did not do an unnecessary rebrand to keep up with current trends. If it worked for House Stark, it can work for your company too.
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