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A Fast Food Approach to Business Branding

Can I get an order of fries with that?

There is an ongoing trend in the business world that has spilled over from the fast-food industry, the package deal. Consumers love package deals almost as much as the marketers that come up with them. They offer the feeling that you’re getting so much more for your money when in reality what you’re getting is a meal without all the complications of actually having to think about what you want to order. In the end what you’re paying for is someone to think for you, what you’re getting won’t be nourishing and likely won’t make you very happy.

I have three kids and I can tell you that a Happy Meal is not a great deal. It’s a burger, a soda, some fries and a worthless piece of plastic that your kid will play with for all of five minutes and then throw it on the floor so you can step on it in the dark. What a bargain! I’ll take three…

The platinum logo package, the gold logo package, the silver logo package…

Fancy names, empty calories. The psychology behind this type of marketing fascinates me, nobody ever offers a bronze package because everybody knows that bronze is the medal the losers get. Supposedly if you fork out the big bucks for the platinum logo package you’ll get more of everything; more designers, more logos to choose from and more revisions. I think more often than not that what people end up buying is more cheeseburgers. If you’re really lucky and you win the logo lottery and one of those cheeseburgers will end up being a steak.

Drive through logo design…mmmm…

I need a logo…now! Corporations have done a fantastic job of training consumers to think that they deserve instant gratification. I’ve been approached by more people than I can remember that wanted their logo designs delivered fast (the other guys say they can do it in three days). I try and explain that speed isn’t really conducive to good design but it often falls on deaf ears. Good logo design takes time because unlike the production of a Happy Meal it’s a process that has a different outcome for every customer. A good logo design isn’t just about what looks good, it’s also about getting a design that is appropriate to your business, and it needs to reach beyond aesthetics and connect with people at an emotional level. To achieve those kinds of results it takes a lot of thought, a lot of work, and a bit of time. You can’t take an assembly line approach to design a logo and expect to get a design that captures the image you want to project to your customers unless of course, the image you’re going for is that of a clown.

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Tim Garner


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