Every movement begins with a moment.

Presidential Candidate Logos in the Modern Era

Posted 11 November 2015 12:00 AM by May Williams @MoxieUSA

Last month, Moxie revealed its new positioning, Modern Marketing Solutions. It’s a reflection of how important it is that we strategically define who we are as an agency and how we differentiate ourselves from the competition. The same can be said for the sea of presidential candidates currently in the running for the 2016 election.

This year, as the candidates revealed their logos, it was obvious that branding was a key part of their campaigns. However, traditional or nontraditional the design, in order to be effective, a presidential candidate’s mark should be meaningful, memorable and simple.

Take Barack Obama’s “O” logo for example. It works because the message behind it is clear.

It’s also versatile, which is essential for application on a variety of campaign promotions. Visually, the colors, typography and iconography are cohesive. He set the bar.

So how do you make a strong mark that will have the most impact? Here are a few things to consider.


It’s easy to stick stars and stripes next to your name and call it a day. However, when you have 10 or more candidates running alongside you, having a unique mark might help set you apart from everyone else. At the very least, it will get people talking.

Hillary Clinton’s “H” is so simple that it’s open to numerous interpretations. Some point out its similarity to the hospital sign. Despite all the Internet’s criticisms, it has the potential to be adapted in a variety of ways graphically.

In addition to symbols, a candidate can also use punctuation. Take Jeb Bush’s giant exclamation point, for example.

The punctuation is a bit distracting and may not be appropriate for a presidential candidate, but it sure is unforgettable. And it also caused quite a reaction on social media.

Then there’s Scott Walker’s logo. It is absolutely necessary to perform a thorough search for any other logos out there that may cause a #logogate. In the case of Walker’s logo, the E was strikingly similar to an eyeglass store chain, America’s Best. They took that opportunity to gain some exposure and used Twitter to make fun of the situation.


While it has been the standard to use last names, we are seeing different approaches this year. Hillary uses her initial H. Jeb Bush is just Jeb! However, other candidates that may not be as well known (Rand Paul, Bernie Sanders and Carly Fiorina) are on a first-name basis.

On the other hand, when one is a figure like Donald Trump, there’s no need for him to rethink his mark. Lucky for him, his last name says it all.


Whether the logo is just a last name, first name or has symbolism attached, it should be appropriate to the voting audience. It should also be an accurate visual representation of America and a candidate’s values. 

It’s great to see this shift toward more progressive branding in political design. The traditional route is not the only option anymore. Many of the candidates have the right idea in terms of how they are thinking about reaching their voting audience.

Yep. Modern is the way to go.


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    12/6/2016 3:54 AM

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