The nomenclature surrounding business marketing is often confusing to newcomers. A business can have a logo. It can have a trademark. And it can have a brand. But what’s the difference between the three?

For starters, the brand is by far the most important because it incorporates the other to and much more. Your business’s “brand” is essentially the way people perceive your business. In other words, it’s the way people think about your business, especially in relation to your competitors. And it’s defined by both the products and services you offer and the way you offer and present them.

What’s a Logo?

A logo is simply an image or emblem that represents your brand. For Apple, for example, their logo is the symbol of an apple with a bite taken out of it. When consumers see this logo, they instantly recognize it and associate it with Apple’s products, services, and overall brand.

Logos often are the company’s name, frequently presented in stylized script. For example, the name Ford written in cursive in white against a blue background and surrounded by an oval is the global logo for the world’s biggest carmaker that is instantly recognizable by just about anybody around the world.


A trademark can be any word, phrase, symbol, design, or combination of these things that identifies your business or the products or services you offer. In the US and other countries, trademarks are registered with a central government bureau that grants your business an exclusive license to use your trademark in conjunction with your company.

Trademarks can be logos, company names, or something else altogether. For example, the phrase “finger-lickin’ good” is a trademark for Kentucky Fried Chicken. No other company can use that phrase to promote or sell their chicken without getting into legal conflict with the trademark office.

Logos also can be trademarks. YouTube’s distinctive logo — which features the word “Tube” inside a television-shaped square — also is a trademark and also represents the video streamer’s brand.


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