Branding is the key to a strong, intriguing company or product. A brand isn’t one logo, it’s an identity you want to create for your audience. Think of it as a full personality for your business and how it will interact with consumers. The right branding can make or break your business; it’s one of the first things your customers see from you. Don’t get stuck with a single logo.⁠ If you want your business to show up and stand out, you need a set of four core logo variations that are all designed from the same stylistic framework.

You’re probably here because someone told you that you need more than one logo. Maybe someone told you that your business needs “submarks” and “alt-logos.” Maybe they said something about redesigning the mark every time you update your website or products. Or maybe they mentioned “brand packaging” and you have no idea what they could be talking about. 

Don’t worry, that’s why we’re here. Here are our four favorite core logo variations you’ll definitely need for your business in 2024.

What Are Logo Variations?

Do you know the power of a perfectly crafted logo variation? It’s one of the best ways to create a cohesive brand identity that’s recognizable everywhere. Logo variations can help you reach even more potential customers through different mediums while still keeping things cohesive. 

For example, a complex logo that looks great on your website, might not look as how embroidered onto a t-shirt or shrunk down for a business card. Different logo variations are simply alternative versions of your main logo.

These different variations are designed to be flexible for any reason you may need them. From website design to billboards, your logo should be recognizable in any size – hence the importance of variations such as your submark or favicon. They are also a great way to keep your site looking fresh and new, and seeing more versions of your original logo can help customers recognize you a little easier out in the wild.

So, How Many Logos Do You Need?

Logos are great for businesses because they can be customized to fit any needs your company might have. That being said, your business may not need four different logo variations – it all depends on preference.

However, if you’re going all out, here are the four main logo variations you should consider having for your business:

Primary Logo

Your primary logo is often the one that represents your business best. The logo may be a mix of text and imagery, or it can simply be an icon that speaks to what you do. Your primary logo is created using simple, clean lines and shapes – usually one or minimal colors with a colored background behind it.

This logo should be the cream of your crop, your most recognizable logo. Primary logos are usually presented as completely horizontal or vertical for maximum space usage. This makes them ideal for business cards, website headers, letterheads, and other major marketing materials your business will need.

However, your primary logo may not always be the answer. Most times this logo variation includes a tagline, icon, text, and colorization, making it quite distracting in smaller spaces.

Use your primary logo for: website header, large printed pieces, business cards, and signage.

Secondary Logo Variations

Think of your secondary logo (or alternative logo) as your primary logo made simple. In this logo, you can remove any extra text, such as your tagline or established date, to appear easier to read.

However, you still want the logo to be recognizable, which is where colors and imagery from your primary logo become important. The secondary logo is your friend if you feel that you need a logo version that’s more compact and tidy, sometimes just including a horizontal typographic look. The perfect balance of minimalism and style. 

Use your secondary logo for: website header (mobile), business cards, watermarks, letterheads, and invoices.

Submark Logo Variations

Submarks are the little things that can make a big difference. Their square and circular shape makes it easy to incorporate almost everywhere. Some submarks include their full business name and elements, some don’t. This is your chance to get a little abstract with your branding.

Submarks are small and condensed, but they pack a punch. They’re used in places where the larger versions of your logo won’t fit, or are hard to read. For instance, if you have a business name that’s long or complicated, consider using lettermarks instead – this makes it easier to read across multiple channels and environments.

Use your submark logo for: Social media watermark, website footer, stickers, compact packaging.

Favicon Logo Variations

Small, but not forgotten. Your favicon logo may be something you don’t necessarily need as a business, but they’re such a fun alternative for your branding. 

Your favicon is the logo that appears in your browser tab next to your website title. Think of it as an online business card, and a way to create a unique and memorable link between your brand and visitors. In fact, this is a common way of recognizing links between websites. Thus, an effective and memorable favicon can be a great tool for increasing your brand’s awareness and recognition online!

Use your favicon logo for: website URL tab, stickers, and small details in product packaging.

We Love Logo Variations at Three Ring Focus

Your brand is a representation of your business. To make sure that it looks its best no matter the medium, be sure to have multiple logo variations on hand. A simple black-and-white version or full-color version is great for different uses and situations. Think about the various mediums you use when designing and using your branding. Remember – one size does not always fit all.

Being fresh is what helps your brand stand out in the crowd. To make sure your logo looks the best it can, update it regularly as your business grows and changes.

Three Ring Focus has been helping clients of all sizes and industries create new logo variations for tons of local businesses in Myrtle Beach and beyond. Whether you’re just starting on your marketing venture, or are looking to expand your already-successful business, we’ve got you covered. We’re the best of both worlds! Three Ring Focus is here to help you craft your next high-quality website, social marketing, or SEO strategy. Check out of some the work we’ve done for a little sneak peek. Don’t miss out on the benefits of having an expertly crafted website.