Politics is marketing. We’ll hear that often. However, if that is the case – then in the first place we should say “politics is design”.
The importance of design in politics has long been and is very well understood by politicians and political marketing is given immense importance. Communicating the message in the right way is the goal of every politician, and the approach to the design process plays the strongest role.
The basis of good marketing is top design. Political parties hire reputable design and marketing agencies and compete with each other to have a better marketing communication strategist. One of the key activities in any marketing campaign of political parties is public opinion research, in order to find the strongest message and the way in which that message should be sent. It is in this field that crowdsourced design can play an important role as a special approach to the design process.
Simply put, the process of crowdsourcing design is a kind of micro-research of public opinion, because it gives a certain insight into how the wider masses perceive a certain political brand, that is, a certain politician.
In this case, the perception of a group of designers is a mini picture of the perception of the people, that is, the perception of a group of designers can be viewed as a kind of impulse of the upcoming vote of the people.
That is why political parties need to feel the pulse of public opinion on the frequency of designers as that part of the nation that perceives reality in a special way – things will be told to them in a unique way.
Here are the most important things in the approach to the logo design process when it comes to political logos and their role in election campaigns!
Colors & Political Logos
We will analyze political campaigns and the nature of political logos on the examples of American election campaigns and political communication, as the most globally media-covered elections in which politicians and parties with extensive and advanced experience in political marketing participate.
Two years ago, The Center for American Politics and Design (CAPD) conducted and published its research in which it provides interesting data concerning political marketing campaigns and logo design, that is, the visual identity of politicians and political parties.
According to the research, the most common color used by political parties, both Democrats and Republicans, is blue. Democrats are somewhat more in favor of blue, but it could be freely said that both sides prefer and favor blue.
To be more precise, according to CAPD, Democrats are 1.3 times more likely than Republicans to use the blue color as their main color, while Republicans are 3.8 times more likely than Democrats to use red as their main color.
The use of blue and red, as the traditional and globally most common colors in politics around the world, is understandable, but in addition to these two colors, it is not uncommon for political parties to use other colors.
CAPD has published in their research study that Democrats are 2.7 times more likely than Republicans to use purple as their main color. They also state that 93% of candidates who use purple are women.
On the other hand, Republicans are less likely to use nontraditional colors than Democrats, but more than 4% of them use black.
The presence of yellow in both political parties is about 3%, while green is present in the campaigns of candidates in somewhere between 3% and 4% of cases. Green is more present among candidates of democratic orientation. The study states that there are cases of using both orange and gray, which Republicans are more in favor of.
Fonts & Political Logos
Fonts, as the strongest carriers of logo energy, are always the subject of a big decision. As for the types of fonts, the winner of political logos is sans-serif. In 2020, according to a CAPD study, 69% of fonts in political logos were sans-serif fonts.
Precise data show that sans serif fonts are used in 698 logos and serif fonts are used in 275 logos (including 53 slab serif logos), while script fonts are used in only 30 logos.
Political parties place great importance on fonts and they are choosing them wisely. Sometimes special fonts are created for their logos. We are going to mention a few examples of fonts used in logos by famous politicians…
The type used in the Biden/Harris logo, type Decimal, is created by Jonathan Hoefler and his team. The Obama campaigns also used typefaces by Hoefler & Co. Donald Trump used the font Akzidenz-Grotesk, designed by Berthold, and also he used FF Meta font designed by Erik Spiekermann. Biden, in earlier days, used Brother 1816 font, designed by TipoType.
Politicians like to use strong fonts, fonts that will present them as strong politicians. Logical. A majority of both Democratic and Republican logos use sans-serif fonts, while Democrats are more likely to use them than Republicans.
Here is an overview of CAPD about sans-serif and serif fonts usage in political campaigns:
- 75% of Democratic logos use sans-serif fonts
- 66% of Republican logos use sans-serif fonts
- 24% of Democratic logos use serif fonts
- 33% of Republican logos use serif fonts
Symbols & Political Logos
Most candidates use the American flag in all possible iterations of stars and stripes to convey patriotism.
Besides stars and stripes, many political campaigns of candidates include graphic elements to reference their states. So, in the logo, they have incorporated symbols of their state flags and similar graphics.
Stars and stripes are definitely most used.
The CAPD study emphasized that the concept of “the box-with-stars logo” established by Trump’s campaign has growing popularity among Republicans, but also among Democrats. Several candidates on both sides used it after Trump.
An important part and element of the logo of politicians is usually the tagline. Slogan or campaign message.
Also very often the handwritten signature of a politician is included as part of the logo. In this way, the “strong personality” of the politician, that is, the president of the political party is emphasized.
When creating a logo for a politician or political party, these are things to keep in mind.