LOL! How and When to Use A Funny Logo
If you search for “funny logos” on Google, you’ll most likely find a ton of big-brand parody logos or crass innuendos. While these are a good laugh, there’s a difference between being crude with your logo and being playful. A decent funny logo is a great way to show your brand’s fun side—without going overboard.
To help you understand how to use a more humorous logo, we’ve filtered through mountains of examples to bring you a curated selection of those that hit the mark just right.
When is it okay to use a funny logo?
A funny logo doesn’t have to be laugh-out-loud hilarious. In fact, just like people, logos that try too hard to be funny often end up falling flat and making things awkward for everybody.
It’s also important to think about context. Funny logos are a great fit for relaxed indie brands that focus on service and relationship-building. Think food trucks, coffee companies, craft beer and breweries, and independent construction companies.
Here’s a good rule of thumb: if your brand tone and voice has room for (tasteful) jokes, you could think about using a funnier logo style. If you run a clinic or a consultancy, it’s probably best to avoid the visual puns for now (and definitely avoid any insensitive jokes that negatively portray a specific group.)
Let’s take a look at some examples!
Brand name puns
Brand name puns are a fun way to show you know your industry and have a bit of banter. They’re ironic, tongue-in-cheek, and fun. Salons, construction companies, landscapers, and food services are good examples of appropriate contexts – but it totally depends on the type of clientele you’re working with.
Tips for using brand name puns:
- Be aware of intellectual property laws. Avoid punning on an existing brand name – we’re not lawyers, but even parody logos can get you in trouble.
- Don’t use common names. Like old jokes, they won’t make you memorable.
- Consider your clients. Could a little humor lighten up an otherwise mundane affair – or would it be in poor taste? Be careful to hit the right tone of professionalism and levity.
Adding fun mascots to logos
Using a mascot is one of the simplest ways to give your logo some immediate character. Mascots create an affinity for a brand by dramatizing certain qualities. The best mascot logos use a cute, funny, or strange character as a memorable visual cue.
Logo characters help customers remember your brand better and create positive associations – plus they’re a great way to create an ongoing ‘story’ in your brand’s growing mythology. Sports teams, bars, fast food, extreme sports, and craft beers love funny mascots for these reasons!
Tips for using mascot logos:
- Get playful. If you’re using a mascot, the chances are you have some creative wiggle-room in your branding.
- Pick a mascot that emphasizes a particular characteristic of your brand.
- You also don’t have to get too literal about it. It’s totally fine if your rationale for having a mascot is ‘I just want a funny animal in my logo!’
- Give your mascot a name! This will help create brand affinity for you and your fans.
Using funny slogans
Logo slogans involve witty comments that relate to your brand name, funny brand promises, or another play on words. Funny slogans are a great tool to complement existing logo names and provide a depth of character and humor.
Tips for using funny logo slogans:
- Channel your inner dad. A dad joke is a great place to start with a not-too-aggressive, chuckle-inducing slogan.
- Keep the quote relevant. Quip on your business by mentioning a product or service in a simple way.
Creating visual puns
A visual pun is simply a way of using a logo symbol or spacing comedically. Using space creatively means subtly pointing towards your brand name, or something you do to enhance the meaning of your logo. The best visual puns involve the representation of a problem or solution directly related to your business.
A tip on using visual puns:
- A visual pun doesn’t have to be complex. Often, the simpler the better. Start by thinking about how the physical shapes in your brand name could translate into objects. Then, explore whether there’s a particular object or character that depicts your business in some way.
A final word on funny logos
When it works, humor is one of the most powerful forms of communication. If you’re designing a fun logo, however, you don’t need to be crazy funny. The most important thing to think about is the tone you want to set, and how to do that in a simple yet immediate way.
A funny logo can come in many shapes and sizes. Anything from a witty brand name, to a memorable mascot or a solid visual pun, can signal to your customers that you’re a friendly, clever bunch.
At its best, humor in logo design is humanizing, breaking the ice, and setting a more relaxed tone. If you’re thinking of designing a funny logo, keep in mind all the usual principles of good design. Keep your quality high and your logo versatile for multiple contexts. Because ultimately, it’s about showing your customers that even though you can have a laugh, at the end of the day you’re still professionals!