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Logo Confusion


I attended my first Canadian Football League game last week and not that it didn’t fully engage my attention, but my focus at times ended up on the end zone and sideline advertising. I was there with a season ticket holder and Canadian native and we ended up playing a game, “Hey Larry, based on that logo what do you think that company does?”


Purolator. I guessed gas or petrol station. Maybe coffee.

Wrong. It’s the Fed-Ex of Canada.


Smithrite. I guessed a lock smith. A special kind of pen?

Wrong. Waste and Recycling company.


Fisherman’s Friend.  This one is easy, right? It must be a bait and tackle shop. A liquor store? Outdoor clothing!

Wrong. It’s a throat lozenge.

The exercise got me thinking about radio logos. Often times we use our logo for marketing and promotion campaigns with a focus on growing CUME. While WE totally get our logos and it’s “obvious” what it is, who you are and what you do – what if you’d never had listened to the radio station would you still “get it?”

As an industry we’ve shied away from using “radio,” “FM” and “AM” and maybe to our detriment. If you weren’t in the radio industry would you “get” these radio station logos?

Radio logo1 radio logo 3 radio logo 4 radio logo 5

Food for thought.

  1. August 27, 2015 at 12:30 AM

    Great point.

    In Europe, some radio stations broadcast on many different frequencies, or use DAB where there aren’t any frequencies at all. So radio station logos here often don’t have any frequencies built-in to them – even harder to work out what they are!

    My advice, for what it’s worth, is to always use “Radio” in your logo, even if you never say it on air.

  2. August 27, 2015 at 12:32 AM

    PS: That’s not football.

  3. August 27, 2015 at 7:53 AM

    That’s why our uses “KFYR 550 AM Radio”

  4. Eric Jon Magnuson
    August 27, 2015 at 8:33 AM

    For Purolator, you should get half credit: The company has a very interesting history–and the name was originally derived from the phrase “pure oil later” (representing oil filters). Those products, though, are now completely separate–and may still be available in Canada.

  1. December 18, 2015 at 12:55 PM

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