[FOUNTAIN]When a firm’s logo becomes a love markRecently, SK Group changed its logo. Above the letters SK, written in English, are the wings of a butterfly. It is called the “butterfly of happiness.” It means that the customers and the company will both become happy.
Beginning next month, SK Group plans to spend 120 billion won ($115 million) to 130 billion won changing its old signboards to reflect the new logo. The reason it does not mind spending such a large amount of money is because this is the new face of the company.
Logos had their origin in the crests of the Middle Ages in Europe. The crest was first introduced when knights in the 12th century wore helmets that covered their faces. Since their view was obstructed and it was hard to distinguish their foes from their own forces, they started drawing different designs on their shields. The first crests were mostly in the shape of a shield for this reason.
According to a book on crests, the ancient Greeks carved designs on circular shields. And the Roman regiments had different designs, according to their regiment, on their shields.
It was through the guilds, or merchant associations, that the crest, which previously had only been used by the royal family and the nobility, was passed on to the common people. Bakers had bread, tailors had scissors and carpenters had axes and rulers on their crests.
The logo of Zwilling JA Henckels AG was twins, the symbol of blacksmiths. In 1731, the founder, Johann Peter Henckels, registered the symbol, which he used when supplying knives to the army in a town called Sollingen. This symbol now represents the knives of Zwilling JA Henckels.
The symbol of Nestle, the world’s largest food company, a small bird’s nest, came from the Swiss Nestle family’s crest.
The shining crown and shield on the hood of a Cadillac is the emblem of the Cadillac family. The Porsche emblem comes from Stuttgart’s emblem, a black horse rearing up on its hind legs.
We usually encounter 1,500 logos and emblems, the faces of companies, each day. A representative of Saatchi and Saatchi, Kevin Roberts, called one of the best of the “faces” a “love mark.”
The best company is one that can leave its mark deep inside a customers’s heart, like a deep love. He chose Harley Davidson and Starbucks as among the best love mark companies.
However, there are no love mark companies in Korea.
It is said that politics and the economy follow the level of its citizens. Is it because of this? I would like to see the “face” of Korea, a logo that makes my heart beat, the love mark of Korea.
by Yi Jung-jae
The writer is a deputy business news editor at the JoongAng Ilbo.