Hidden Messages in Company Logos

Baskin Robbins

Baskin Robbins is known for its ice cream, but did you know the logo has a hidden message? Look closely, and you’ll see the number 31 in the initials—as in the number of flavors the company began offering in 1953. Why 31 flavors? It’s one for every day of the month, so you can try something new every day. Yum! The company recently unveiled a new logo (its first major refresh since 2006), but don’t worry—you can still spot the 31 in it.


Amazon

Amazon is a staple in many online shoppers’ lives, but have you ever wondered what that little arrow at the bottom of the logo means? It’s not just a fun design element—the arrow broadcasts the wide variety of stuff (from A to Z) sold on Amazon. 


Apple

Why does the tech giant’s iconic logo have a bite taken out of it? The reason is pretty practical. The designer made the bite mark for scale so that a smaller logo would still look like an apple and not a cherry. 


FedEx

The FedEx logo looks pretty normal at first glance, so it’s easy to miss the hidden message. Look at the space between the E and the x—it’s an arrow pointing forward, perhaps to suggest speedy and accurate delivery.


Toblerone

If you’ve snagged this delicious Swiss chocolate bar in your day, you’ve seen the mountain on its logo. But wait, what’s that on the left side of the mountain? That’s right: It’s a bear. The bear is the official symbol of the Swiss town of Bern, the original home of Toblerone.


Dell

The sideways E in the Dell logo is more than just a creative way to set it apart from other logos. Michael Dell announced that the goal of his company was to “turn the world on its ear.” It’s been said he started with an E.


Wikipedia

Wikipedia is a massive source of information, and there’s a reason the site’s puzzling logo isn’t totally complete. The unfinished globe, made of puzzle pieces with characters from various languages, represents the “incomplete nature” of the company’s mission to be the go-to information portal—and the fact that a site built on user submissions can never be complete.


Sun Microsystems

The hidden message in this logo is very clever from a marketing and branding perspective. If you turn the logo around, the word “Sun” is always there. 


Tostitos

You may have thought the dot over the “i” was used to give the logo a pop of color, but it’s actually part of a hidden—and creative—message. The red dot is actually a bowl of salsa. The two T’s are people, and the yellow triangle in between them is a chip. It’s supposed to represent people coming together to share a tasty snack of chips and salsa.


Goodwill

You may assume the logo contains a smiling face to represent how good it feels to clean your house, donate items, and recycle clothes you no longer use. But the face is actually just a larger version of the g in the word “Goodwill,” which appears at the bottom of the logo. 


LG

Are the L and the G cleverly configured into a smiley face, presumably the face of a happy LG customer? Nope. Eagle-eyed folks point out that if you tilt your head to the side, that smiley face actually looks like a modified version of Pacman. Perhaps an ode to the beloved arcade game character and the earlier days of personal technology? That’s pure speculation. According to LG, the logo stands for the world, future, youth, humanity, and technology.


Hershey’s Kisses

These two overlapping Hershey’s Kisses make us crave chocolate big time. But if you look carefully at the logo, you’ll notice it doesn’t contain only two kisses. There are three! Look between the “K” and the “I” in the word “Kisses.” If you tilt your head to the left, you’ll see a sideways kiss planted firmly between the two letters. 


Pinterest

You may think this logo is pretty cut and dried here, with a capital “P” placed in the middle of a bright red circle. But the company’s signature “P” also doubles as an illustration of a map pin. According to CNBC, one of the designers of the Pinterest logo didn’t want to add the visual of an actual pin, but the final look came together organically.


Cisco

Initially, this logo looks pretty simplistic. The networking company’s name is plain as day under a line motif. But there’s more to this logo than meets the eye. According to Canva, those blue stripes represent an electromagnet and the Golden Gate Bridge, paying homage to Cisco’s namesake San Francisco. Once you see the bridge in those lines, you can’t unsee it!


Milwaukee Brewers

This logo has been updated, but the Milwaukee Brewers still sell gear with the design. It’s popular with fans, probably because the design gurus didn’t supply just any old mitt. A lowercase “M” and “B” form the glove, creatively using the team’s initials.


Adidas

With “Adidas” in lowercase, bold type, most people focus on the company name. But those diagonal stripes have meaning: They are intended to look like a mountain—the kind of elite mountain athletes would push themselves to climb against all odds.


Sony Vaio

At first glance, we thought a designer got fancy with fonts when crafting the word “Vaio,” but there’s meaning behind that original look. Sony wanted the logo to represent the integration of analog and digital technology. The “V” and “A” were drawn to show an analog wave. The “I” and “O” are there to represent binary code. For those not tech-savvy, binary is a computer language comprised of ones and zeros.


Chick-fil-A

Some think the company name, written in bright red cursive, is simply cute and a little country. The font has certainly become integral to the Chick-fil-A identity, but note the chicken incorporated into the “C.”


IBM

The IBM logo looks like it was printed on a primitive printer, horizontal lines and all. That’s not the intention behind the logo, though. Turns out, those horizontal lines symbolize the equal sign, representing IBM’s dedication to equality.


Gillette

This font looks sporty, with the slanted style lending itself to the notion of speed. Those slanted letters are angled to give off a “razor-sharp” feeling. The “G” and the “I” have been cut to symbolize the brand’s signature product. And they sponsor the best stadium in America, the home of the 6x Superbowl-winning New England Patriots!


Washington Capitals

We see a patriotic eagle in red, white, and blue in this logo for Washington, D.C.’s NHL team. But there’s something hidden you may not have noticed. In the negative space at the bottom, you’ll find a silhouette of the Capitol building, a nod to the team’s hometown.


Ray-Ban

You may think the logo portrays the company’s name in a script font, providing a fashion-forward feel. Famous for its beloved sunglasses, Ray-Ban incorporates a subtle illustration of a pair of shades in the “B” (turn your head sideways to see it).


Hyundai

It’s a jazzy-styled “H” for Hyundai, isn’t it? It’s slanted to insinuate speed—or so we thought. This logo is meant to represent two people shaking hands; one is a salesperson, and the other is a satisfied car customer.


Toyota

This car manufacturer’s logo certainly encompasses more than meets the eye. Toyota said that the three overlapping ovals on American vehicles “symbolize the unification of the hearts of our customers and the heart of Toyota products. The background space represents Toyota’s technological advancement and the boundless opportunities ahead.” And possibly even more impressive, if you look even closer at the overlapping ovals, you’ll see the word “Toyota” spelled out.


My Fonts

My Fonts is an online font resource that allows users to access several fonts. The ‘My’ in My Fonts is stylized to look like a hand, giving the impression that users can get their hands on whatever fonts they’d like.


BMW

BMW’s logo colors come from the Bavarian flag, which is blue and white. Their logo is derived from the Rapp Motor Works’ logo, which is very similar. It is commonly thought that the logo represents the blades of a spinning propellor due to its aviation history and the ad created in the 1920s.


Google

Another incredibly recognizable logo worldwide (even after their recent redesign), Google’s logo, is supposed to symbolize that they don’t play by the rules and know how to have fun. Instead of using a crazy font or symbol, they chose to relay their message in color. They stuck with the primary color palette but broke it with a secondary color, green.


Langer Enterprises LLC

I formed Langer Enterprises after getting laid off from a web design company called Netlever in 2000. Before that, I was in the hotel business for 11 years during the Internet’s infancy. The first email that I ever set up, I wanted to use my nickname, Langer, which I was given while playing little league by a fellow teammate. The internet company I was using at the time was Juno.com, but when I tried to set up langer@juno.com, it was not available. I then tried llanger@juno.com, which was taken, and lllanger@juno.com, which was not! When I formed Langer Enterprises, I incorporated my original email’s 3 L’s into my logo, a shout-out to when I had to set up my first phone modem in my Windows 95 PC at work. I still have access to this email after all of these years.