Going to a party and want to draw attention to yourself? Fashion experts say to wear red. It’s a bold primary color that grabs everyone’s eyes and refuses to let go.
Popular brands have known this for decades, and they use red in their logos all the time. The effect is that you can’t help but look. Sometimes it’s loud and screams in your face to stop and stare. Other times it’s more subtle, but the effect is still the same; their brand logo gets noticed. Why not follow in their footsteps?
By the end of this article, you’ll know why red logos are so compelling, and you’ll have seen plenty of logo ideas for inspiration—plus you’ll know when to create a red logo for your own business.
Why does the color red affect us so much?
Your brain automatically responds to red, as it can be a sign of danger or a source of food and comfort. You want to avoid poisonous berries and venomous animals, but the warm glow of a fire or the sight of fresh red meat is alluring and comforting.
Just imagine a rare steak with a glass of red wine by the fire. How does it make you feel?
Some of the strongest emotions of red are:
Yes, we’ve evolved from hunter-gatherers into a complex and technologically advanced society. But warning signs, traffic lights, and valentine gifts still use red because we have such a strong response to it.
Let’s now explore popular brands that use red in their logos. Which ones reach out and grab you? Which ones cause a rumble in your stomach? And which ones give you a buzz of energy or make you feel safe and secure?
Because there are so many different red logos out there, let’s break them down into popular categories.
Just look at the number of popular restaurant logos that boast red as their primary color. These companies use red to elicit hunger from their audience and catch their attention.
If you’re in the food industry, take a more in-depth look at how they combine colors and images. Sometimes the most significant impact is the solid red background.
There’s a lot of competition in the clothing industry, especially with physical stores in busy locations. How do these companies show off their brand spirit and grab your attention?
Red logos are memorable and bring attention to physical stores, both because the color pops and because it allows signs to be read from a distance.
Puma’s pouncing logo conveys action and excitement. H&M’s logo helps their brand stand out in busy high-streets and malls. Uniqlo does the same, but with a red background and white text.
Next time you’re out and about on the street, take a moment to look at each boutique’s logo. Which ones do you immediately notice and recognize?
How do technology and media companies get their brand logo noticed? With a strong red background and bright white text. You’ll usually see these brands online or printed, and the vibrant red helps them stand out and grab attention.
If your business has a strong online presence, you’ll want to think about how your logo will jump off the screen. Likewise, if you print out brochures or posters, your red logo will pop off the page.
Banks, investment agencies, and insurance companies may not be the most exciting industries, but they’re incredibly important. Companies like Vanguard use red in their logo to show they’re professional, trustworthy, and confident—everything you want in a company that you’re giving large amounts of money to. They want you to know that you’re in safe hands with them.
Even if your business isn’t exciting or sexy, you can still use vibrant red colors to show off how professional and competent you are, or to instill a breath of fresh air into an otherwise “boring” industry.
Some companies, like American Family Insurance, use a splash of red in their logo without making it the primary color, in order to do just that.
To quickly recap, the color red evokes different feelings and emotions—like excitement, energy, and passion—and is used by famous brands to grab attention. It’s a versatile color and can be used as part of the logo design itself or in the background, and it can be combined with other intense colors to convey a nuanced message to your audience.
When creating your own logo, do you want it to be noticed? Do you want to appear confident and trustworthy? Do you want to be known as THE place to eat and drink? Or are you in the business of love and romance? If yes, think about using red.
There’s no right way or wrong way to use red. But, if you want to add excitement and strong values to your brand logo, consider putting it in your design.
Want to create a brand that’s sizzling hot?
You shouldn’t be afraid to try new designs and experiment to get the result you want. With our logo design tool, you can change fonts and colors endlessly until you get your desired look, with the colors that work for you and your business. There’s plenty of ways to make red work for you; why not start experimenting now?