What is Your Logo Saying About You?

Did you know that the movie The Princess Bride taught us a valuable lesson on branding?


Remember that unforgettable line from the movie The Princess Bride where the the evil Vizzini (performed hysterically by actor Wallace Shawn) states, “Ha ha, you fool!! You fell victim to one of the classic blunders!” (The rest of his line is irrelevant to this article but is provided for its humorous relief: “The most famous is never get involved in a land war in Asia; and only slightly less well known is this: Never go in against a Sicilian, when death is on the line!”)


Now onto the point of today’s article.

In meetings with clients and prospective clients, I notice the fact that “designing a logo” has somehow become a beauty contest resulting in such unique aspects as “I’ll show it to my wife and get back to you” or “Let’s get the consensus of those in the room and decide.”

Not only is this unworkable, it is catastrophe in the making. So I take a breath and ask (even when it’s fairly obvious that the wife may not represent “the GenX target audience” we are aiming to make contact with), “Does your wife reflect the audience we’re targeting?”

For one project several years ago, I had to speak with nearly 40 “stakeholders” of a city to get “their buy-in” on a particular direction. I told them, “Your opinion is the least important one regarding this direction.” (I then waited about 3 seconds for dramatic effect.) “And so is mine.” I proceeded to tell them what we collectively think has little if no relevance to the project at hand.

I went on to tell them the most important opinion is the one outside of this room, of the actual people we are targeting to communicate with.

Fortunately, with the above approach, we have been able to achieve some great accomplishments, with the help and cooperation of our clients.


To see several examples showing before and after treatments (these show the dramatic difference and transformation that is possible when everyone is targeting the same thing), visit


David Brier, Chief Gravity Defyer at DBD International, is the recipient of over 300 industry awards creating brands for such company’s as Estee Lauder, Revlon, New York City Ballet, Legacy
Chocolates, Sunbelt Software and many more.

Award-winning and result-driven examples can be seen at and a side-by-side comparison of before-and after-client identites can be seen at

Want one the country’s leading designers of identites and more? His talent can be yours. Contact


About the author

Brand identity expert, veteran designer, author, speaker and Fast Company expert blogger. Shark Tank investor and CEO of fashion brand Fubu, Daymond John states, "David Brier is brilliant with branding." He’s been written about in, INC and Fortune Small Business. In addition to being a branding specialist and a Fast Company expert blogger, David's Slideshare presentations on branding have exceeded the 500,000 view milestone (a founding member of Slideshare's Half-a-Million Views Club) and is the 1st place winner in the 2013 Shorty Awards (known industry-wide as “The Oscars for Social Media”) for branding