Logo Shows Freedom is Foundation for a Free Market

Logo Shows Freedom is Foundation for a Free Market

By Dan Gainor
June 27, 2005

     A logo is a lot more than just a piece of art that represents an organization. Its a statement of what an organization is and what it stands for. Many organizations and businesses embrace symbolic representations of letters or names an idea that dates to time of the ancient Greeks and Romans. The golden arches of the McDonalds logo are typical of this logo type and one of the most recognizable icons in the world.

     Representing a concept is much more challenging and that was the problem faced by the staff at the Media Research Centers Business & Media Institute. While the concept of free markets seems straightforward, it is not easily understood by much of the public.

     Marketing Director Michelle OHalloran, BMI Director Dan Gainor began the initial discussion by trying to find words and images about what the free market actually means. The new BMI mission statement, Auditing the medias coverage of the free enterprise system, was added to the mix.

     The initial ideas focused on concepts like freedom and liberty, as well as more tangible ideas about business, free enterprise and markets. Coupled with the media component, that posed a significant challenge. Trying to create synergy with the main organizational Web site (www.mrc.org) was even more challenging. Veteran freelance designer Kristin Pope (kpope@sc.rr.com) was brought in to add her expertise.

     Several initial directions were considered, but few things carried the weight of columns for conveying the history of democracy. Pope took that idea further, using several columns to evoke the classic image of Wall Street the heart of the financial markets. That idea, coupled with the American flag for emphasis, became the heart of our concept. BMI staffers Charles Simpson and Amy Menefee added valuable suggestions on how to advance that concept and truly improve the final result.

     As the logo was refined, the design team tried several times to incorporate images that evoked aspects of the media. None of them worked. Rather than attempt to muddle the logo, it was decided to include the Media Research Center logo as part of the nameplate. As one department of an organization that has been monitoring the media for more than 18 years, it was essential that the Business & Media Institute acknowledge its roots.

     That ultimate combination is the one you see today. We feel it is strong, simple and compelling and emphasizes how closely linked the free market system is to the other freedoms we all hold so dear.