• The Logo “Visual Thickness Effect”: When and Why It Boosts Brand Evaluation. Does It Relax the Logo Visual Asymmetry Side-effect?

      Eyni, Ardalan; Faculty of Business Programs
      Logos are one of the first elements of brands with which new consumers interact. Thus, the symbolic meanings that a logo implies by its visual characteristics, e.g., circularity vs angularity, symmetry vs asymmetry, etc., can form consumers’ early perception of personality of the associated brand. A considerable body of research studies the key visual elements of logos that influence consumers’ perceptions about the associated brands. The primary aim of this research is to contribute to this body of literature by documenting the logo “Visual Thickness Effect” (VTE) as an understudied but influential visual phenomenon. Using 4685 MTurk participants and 34 fictitious logos, across two pre-studies and five main studies, we find support for the logo Visual Thickness Effect, in that thick logo boosts perception of brand personality, as a result of boosting perception of brand power. Also, the perception of brand power induced by logo thickness is moderated by consumer’s level of perceived power of the self, in that consumers with higher sense of power are less influenced by thickness of logo, as a sign of brand power, when evaluating a brand. Further, the perception of brand power induced by logo thickness is moderated by consumer’s level of visuospatial capacity, meaning that people with higher visuospatial sketchpad are less influenced by thickness of logo, as an extraneous visual stimulus, while evaluating a brand. Also, results suggest that the logo Visual Thickness Effect is at play as long as consumers do not already possess complementary information about the associated brand. Furthermore, we try to contribute to the findings of prior research by suggesting perception of logo familiarity as the underlying mechanism why asymmetric logo attenuates the perception of brands sincerity, competence, and ruggedness. Results show that symmetrical logos can be perceived as more familiar than asymmetrical logos. Findings of this research imply that brands, especially new-to-market brands, might exploit thick logos. This research contributes to the literature for perception of visual elements, logo design, brand evaluation, perception of power, and sensory marketing.