It’s easy to hear when the news is on – there’s (usually) no laugh track.
The anchor or reporters’ voices convey a straight-forward urgency. Besides the audio branding, there are other cues to alert you that a news channel is committed to informing, especially the logo. Different shapes, colors and typography merge to convey a network’s particular focus and create a visual mark that is unique from its competitors.
Whether it’s something simple for letterhead or a unified brand for your multimedia empire, the network news sites are a source of inspiration for your own logo designs. To spur ideas with your designs, visit the network news sites, or check out logo designs on Logo Garden when considering the visual brand you want to convey.
Among the top to study the most memorable TV news logos are:
Photo by swabksalot via Flickr
Since 1951, the CBS “eye” has accompanied all programming, especially the news. According to CBS.com, the eye has been adapted over the decades, but the basic line design of shapes within a circle never changes. Creator William Golden said his original effort was a “symbol in motion” that blended a camera shutter with Americana images of hex designs intended to ward off evil spirits. But the message is also an all-seeing eye uncovering the truth and observing events.
Photo by Chicago Architecture Today via Flickr
Peacocks are inherently flashy, noisy and may not be your first choice for the ideal symbol of hard-hitting news. But since the 1950s, the proud peacock has been the face of NBC and its news division. It started as a way to show color TV owners that NBC was serious about color. Interestingly, some early versions showed the whole bird, but today it’s only the peacock’s head and feathers.
Photo by yonghokim via Flickr
Depending on your political bent, this network is a trusted source in a crazy world, or a crazy network in a crazy world. But the logo communicates quite a bit: its blue background, white lettering and red accents collectively evoke a sense of American patriotism. The logo’s dominant blue contrasts with rival CNN’s dominant red and references the Fox searchlights that show a combined focus on shining light into darkness. It also references the Fox logo, which dates back to 1935, when the bright searchlights, fanfare and massive monument greeted moviegoers.
Photo by Julie, Dave & Family via Flickr
The first 24-hour news channel in the world goes crazy with red – three connected, curved block letters that are either red with a thin white line, or a reverse, with white letters and a thin, red line. It also differs from Fox in that there is little mention or similarities in logos to its parent company Turner Broadcasting System. The turner.com logo is actually simple white letters on a black background, which makes it distinct Turner’s diverse stable of channels. According to Famouslogos.us, the CNN logo has remained unchanged since 1980, which also helps its recognition and sense of stability.
Photo by Andre-Pierre via Flickr
It’s black, round and all lower-case letters logo has been the network’s prime logo since the 1940s. The dark, powerful sphere suggests solidity and distinguishes itself from the colorful NBC logo and the multi-shaped CBS logo. A variation for news programs turns the recognizable sphere into a spinning globe.