200 New Themed Logos

We’re testing a new concept to solve a problem that can’t easily be solved:

EzineArticles has ~100k expert authors who know and understand what EzineArticles is, but in any given day, we’ll have 100k users before the sun rises who don’t know or understand what EzineArticles is?

ie: We don’t have a very consumer-friendly facing brand that encourages repeat visits or brand loyalty by way of the EzineArticles name.

So we came up with this ambitious idea to theme-up all 569 categories with an EzineArticles logo that included elements of the niche that those articles will be found in. This way a user might perceive that the logo and the theme match visually…and perhaps they may even start to think of EzineArticles as an online magaZINE for the niche they are viewing articles on.

Some examples include:











What do you think? Good idea or bad? How should this be improved on?

34 Comments »


1

Chris,

Excellent idea and a very good way to freshen things up.

JF

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 8:01 AM

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2

Clever, gives you a sense of “Magazine.”
Who will be seeing these symbols, only writers in search of a niche?
Where will they be displayed?
EzineArticles IS a brand, didn’t you know?
Pat

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 8:12 AM

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3
Hope Wilbanks writes:

Awesome! Love the new logos! I think that’s a great concept and good idea to help give people a visual of the categories.

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 8:17 AM

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4
Tim Russell writes:

I think if you have every other problem fixed already it is a great idea.
My suggestion is to cruise to some other IM forums and see what people say about your website. Maybe the time spent making things pretty could be better spent making the site faster and more useful.
I’m not being a hater, just an observer.

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 8:25 AM

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5
Jim writes:

The logos look nice but in some cases they may send the wrong message. A first time visitor seeing the logo with the cow may just assume that EzineArticles is just focused on farming or agriculture articles.

Are the logos going to be linked to a specific catagory?

The only sure way to find out if they are effective is through good testing.

They are eye catching.

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 8:27 AM

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6

Patricia,

Eventually, every niche will have a themed-EzineArticles logo.

Right now, check out health & fitness, Recreation & sports, Gaming or travel & leisure. Most of them are done and posted live.

Tim,

Gee, can’t please them all.

We’re reading daily what is being said about us and prioritizing problems accordingly.

Which forum is saying we’ve got speed issues and if so, which area needs a speed jump?

How specifically should we be making the site more useful?

Jim,

How do we test whether the new logos are successful?

By user complaints or praise?

Any quantitative way to measure?

All,

You may have to press SHIFT-RELOAD to see the new logos if you’ve viewed the category previously.

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 8:29 AM

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7
Tim Russell writes:

After reading the last post I feel like I gave the wrong impression.

EzineArticles.com is by far and away the best resource to get article out on the internet. It is rare to find a resource like the website that is so much better than anything else that it warrants question on the forums i cruise like “what other directory besides ezinarticles do you use?”.

That question is a statement in itself, I think the name/brand is very close to becoming something like Kleenex in that your site is associated as the leader not “with the leaders”.

Please consider my previous post as my before coffee musings.

If you want to slap some lipstick on it who am I to argue.

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 8:40 AM

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8

Did someone say Coffee?

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 8:52 AM

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9

I think you should consider this step a little longer before you alter a registered trademark and potentially water down your brand. I agree with Jim’s comment that new visitors may not get the scope of EzineArticles if they happen to only see one logo that is targeted to a specific topic.

Google gets away with altering their brand on holidays, etc. because they have one of the world’s most recognized brands. And, part of that brand is the holiday logo.

Rather than weakening your brand, why not come up with a supplemental icon that you can use for each area. I think it might give you more freedom to be creative, while still maintaining the strength and recognition of the trademark.

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 8:54 AM

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10
Jan Verhoeff writes:

Any old barn looks great with a new coat of paint!

I’ve in the past used other directories, and still do on rare occasions (I still test drive other new car before I go buy a Ford too.), but all in all, I’m not here for the graphics. Don’t get me wrong, you’ve got cute graphics…

I’m here for the ability to get my articles at the top of the search engines and drive traffic. If graphics do it for you, go for the Gold, I’ll even chip in a few comments and a Hail Mary on Sunday for you — BTW I’m Baptist.

I’m rather fond of the logos your team designs, I think they’re cute, and I’m a cheek pincher, so my opinion matters.

Somebody woke me up on the wrong side of the bed this morning, gave me a head cold, used up all my tissues, and left me no TEA BAGS! So, I’m going out to get Tea Bags and honey, AND LEMON… I’ll be back and try this again when I’m not choking over Tim’s Foot in Mouth Disease! LOL

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 8:58 AM

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11
Dave Wellman writes:

I agree with the comments already in place. Great idea and one I heartily support.

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 9:09 AM

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12

Cynthia,

These are “supplemental” icons.

The main pages and all non category pages will continue to have the regular EzineArticles registered trademark logo.

Perhaps I’m not understanding your point?

Jan,

These graphics are for the users… as we set an internal goal to rise the number of pages per visit…which means needing to create more user loyalty or feeling like they can trust the content they are reading as authoritative… to tell their friends and then COME BACK to consume more content. And… we want them to come back directly to the site.

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 9:13 AM

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13
Dan Goodwin writes:

Hi Chris and all,

I’m not really sure where these logos would be used. When you talk about “users” do you mean all users – authors, ezine and website publishers looking for content and the internet user looking for an article on a specific topic or just the latter two types?

I think it would very difficult to create one for each category that would be instantly associated with that category. Some are more obvious than others of course.

I think if I understood the point of them I’d be more on board, I’m definitely a fan of using graphics to make things look more visually appealing.

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 11:33 AM

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14

Dan,

Pure “Users” are article readers and not authors or publishers.

Users can be Authors and/or Publishers…

Members are Authors for now.

99% of our Users makes our service free for Members… but it’s definitely an eco-system where we acknowledge that the Member/Author starts the cycle and our role is the platform.

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 12:23 PM

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15
Alejandro Guevara Onofre writes:

Christopher. Good idea. You are very creative. For me, it is important! because the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympic Games will be held from August 8 to 24 ( worldwide viewing audience of more than 2.5 billion in over 200 nations and dependencies). I think that EzineArticles will have thousands of visitors from the Netherlands, Russia, Virgin Islands, Turkmenistan to Botswana and the People’s Republic of China!
Many thanks
Alejandro from Lima, Peru

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 3:14 PM

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16
Lance Winslow writes:

I personally like this idea very much for several reasons. One, it goes with the theme of the article category and thus, specializes and promotes the authors as even more of an expert in that specific category. It is very wise branding actually. I did this in our company and it helped immensely, especially in unique categories with little if any competition. We became the company that specialized in that sub-sector, the team to beat, the team by which the entire industry was to be judged and to that point, it opened the door to others and made us even more popular with customers and future clients. Those are my initial thoughts.

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 4:07 PM

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17
Andrew Polanski writes:

Awesome idea! I think this will really make EzineArticles look a lot better. You’re filled with creativity.

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 5:59 PM

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18

Andrew,

To be fair, Shaun on our team gets the credit as he designed the majority of themed logos.

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 6:28 PM

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19
Edward Weiss writes:

I think it’s a good idea. But I have to tell you, I think the whole EzineArticles site needs a redesign.

It could be much more professional looking than it is now – giving you even more cache.

As Simon Cowell might say … “If I’m being honest with you….” :)

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 7:29 PM

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20
Jan Verhoeff writes:

Professionalism on the Internet is quite a subjective topic. I’ve been told some of my sites are extremely professional, then when I ask deeper questions, I find that the person commenting happens to like specific colors, and those colors ‘appear professional’ to that person. On the other hand, the colors that person doesn’t like don’t look professional.

I’m a navigator – if I can navigate the site easily, without a lot of back tracking and out of site links, I like it. If not, I’m ready to run for cover and I don’t care what colors it includes. Colors do play an important part of professionalism on a website, but they aren’t my first and foremost thought when considering professionalism.

Redesigning a website means change and many people are adverse to change. Changing a website will drive some users away, particularly if the new site is less user friendly than the old site. I really appreciate sites that stick to a good solid design and stay with it…. I’m still looking for good solid design on some of my sites. But, I do occasionally change colors to adjust usability.

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 7:50 PM

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21

Edward,

I like you dawg, but you sound a little “pitchy”. ;-)

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 8:29 PM

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22
Carla writes:

Chris,

You said: You “have 100k users before the sun rises who don’t know or understand what EzineArticles is”

How does a picture explain or help relate to others what EzineArticles is? The answer is: it doesn’t.

Do you want to make EzineArticles more recognizable (branded) on the internet? Do you want to help people understand what EzineArticles is and how/when to use it (as well as use it more often/more effectively)? Do you want people who come to the EzineArticles website to grasp it’s purpose and value right away.

Those are clearly very different goals.

And, I honestly believe that graphics do not accomplish any of those goals. You still don’t reach and communicate your intended purpose to the people you are targeting.

Please believe me that I wouldn’t be taking the time to post this if I weren’t interested in helping. I’m not trying to be negative. I just want to clarify your position and intent to better determine the best plan of action.

~Carla

Comment provided May 14, 2008 at 10:40 PM

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23
Tracy Falbe writes:

I think the logos look good and will add value to the categories. There is a lot to be said for giving the readers visual cues.

Just to let you know since you’re working on your consumer marketing, I actually find EzineArticles very useful in sort of a search engine way. I can come here, do a search, find a few articles plus web addresses in the resource boxes to websites that might have the product, service, info I’m looking for. Sometimes this works far better than a search engine and I can find things that I would never be able to find any other way.

Comment provided May 15, 2008 at 2:45 AM

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24
Aakash Shah writes:

hi,
I liked the Idea of Themed logo for each categories. But may i suggest instead of using clipart why not make them of better designs or pictures.
Just my POV.
Best OF luck.

Comment provided May 15, 2008 at 7:49 AM

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25

All,

Want you to know that we are not adverse to change.

We’re sensitive to our members being adverse to change.

You should see our transition legacy systems behind-the-scenes work as we’re still supporting things from the way people did things many years ago to help them move to the way we do things today.

Most of all, we’re fearful to mess with what works.

We’re highly data-driven in our decision making and the data says, DON’T MESS WITH IT.

:)

-Commander Data

Comment provided May 15, 2008 at 8:15 AM

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26
aris writes:

The good idea and the good logo also for refreshing in order to bore and increase thoughts
refreshing.thank cris for idea

Comment provided May 15, 2008 at 10:57 AM

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27
Dan Goodwin writes:

Chris, following your comment no 25, I’d say don’t mess with it too…

If you’re looking to improve your brand image, personally I don’t think these logos do that, in fact I think they weaken it and look a bit like Microsoft Word clip art, like someone else mentioned.

I think the design time and investment would be better spend in polishing up your existing logo, keeping it recognisable with the “@” symbol, but more professional and shiny.

That’s just my take on it.

Dan

Comment provided May 15, 2008 at 11:44 AM

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28
Lance Winslow writes:

One Logo, that you might wish to consider is the “Automotive-TRUCKS” Logo. It shows a “pickup truck” which is one thing that the viewers come to look at but, it would be better to have a pickup and an Big Rig truck (tractor) in a “V” formation facing the forward. Pickup facing forward on the left, big rig truck on the right side, each truck facing forward towards each other.

The Big Rig Truck – http://www.truckwashguy.com/fundraisers.shtml should look kind of like that, plenty of clip art you can blend in.

The reason I mention this is because “Trucks” mean to the public – Trucking Trucks and Fancy Truck Accessories like http://www.SEMA.org

In fact, you could actually separate your categories on this one to keep both audiences happy. The trucking industry is huge in itself, everything we buy, eat or use to make stuff all comes by truck, this is why high fuel prices is raising costs. http://www.worldthinktank.net/pdfs/futuretrucktechnologies.pdf

And the automotive aftermarket business is huge and incorporates itself into many categories here like GPS, mobile video, trucks, auto, etc. etc. I think you could add to this picture and continue the combined category or you could divide these categories and hit each sub-sector like no other article submission site has ever done before?

Comment provided May 15, 2008 at 3:58 PM

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29
Brooke Tinch writes:

I think that the red color on the website cheapens the website!

Comment provided May 16, 2008 at 7:55 AM

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30
Terri Symington writes:

Hello Chris,

I commend you and your staff on a great product and service. This is one topic that I know well. Branding is crucial…but so are first impressions. Sometimes it is necessary to take a leap of faith, and make the essential changes in order to keep evolving.

As a designer I try to see the bigger picture from the perspective of the target client and market. That being said, I have to comment that anything “cute” belongs in a child’s nursery. I like the idea of identifying the individual categories with graphics…however, I for one believe that it should reflect a higher level of sophistication. Cut the cuteness. And if I may be so bold as to say, I would also update the existing logo as well. Just my 2 cents.

Comment provided May 16, 2008 at 6:26 PM

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31

Terri & all,

I agree.. We’re going to focus on getting rid of all ‘Cute’ and yes, we’ll be working on freshening up our core regular logo. When ready, I’ll share with our blog readers first. :)

Comment provided May 16, 2008 at 7:02 PM

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32
Sylvie writes:

As a “newbie” (meaning that I joined today!) who’se been a CEO of State Health and a University founding Head of School, I’ve been asked to produce “brands” amongst writing/scholarly publics more particularly, but also amongst marginally literate Aboriginal populations.

I totally agree with Carla about the need to distinguish goals, (and with Terri about “cute”). Certainly the pictorial logos draw the eye the first time… but does it help anyone remember where they saw something? Or the value they found there? Or will they be left trying to Google “cow” and hope we turn up?

Refreshing the look might be a good thing, but I suggest caution with respect to the inclusion of anything that distracts from what ought to be remembered if we are to grow brand/market segment.

Sorry for speaking up so soon!

Comment provided May 18, 2008 at 5:40 AM

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33
Amelia writes:

Not sure what the messge is supposed to be. These seem a bit to juvenile for the ezine article brand.

Comment provided June 9, 2008 at 2:18 PM

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34
Annie Kile writes:

The opportunity to brand myself as an expert on my new website via the “Expert EzineArticles Author” logo is priceless. That particular logo validates and supports the brand I am building for my new business. While I agree that it is important to retain a consistently recognizable component (which you do) of the Ezine brand within the new logos, the niche concept has great potential. The niche logo provides a visual means for particular business types to validate and support the brand most useful to their unique niche.

Comment provided June 10, 2008 at 1:28 PM

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