Delta is easily one of the best-known airlines in the United States. One of the big names left standing after decades of mergers, it has a tradition of high quality and one of the best reputations of all the domestic airlines. While the company has certainly grown over the decades, it has managed to keep a sterling reputation even as it morphed from a local airline into an international giant. This article will detail the history of one of the company’s major assets – the Delta Airlines logo – as it changed and evolved alongside the company itself.
Delta Airlines Logo Design Elements
The current Delta Airlines logo, which the company refers to as the ‘widget’, is a relatively recent creation. Composed of a simple triangular logo alongside the company’s name, it certainly helps to further tie the brand’s image together. It’s simple but easy to identify at a distance, making it a successful bit of branding that sticks in the minds of consumers.
The main element of the logo is certainly the shape. The ‘widget’ is a stylized red triangle (or, appropriately, a delta) atop another triangle. It helps to rope the company’s name back into the logo itself, further eliminating the need for complicated signage at a glance. It’s a simple bit of marketing trickery, but one that works well.
The other element of the logo is the word ‘Delta’ spelled in all-caps. The word is short, simple and easy to read, spelled out so that it’s likewise impossible to get wrong when reading. It’s another simple visual trick that works very well.
Changes and Evolution
The one thing that’s stayed true across most of Delta’s logos is the triangular shape. Actually the Greek letter Delta, it corresponds to the D in the company’s name. As the company has grown, it has continued to keep the same shape with a number of different design elements. From 1930-1934 it emphasized the company’s crop-dusting roots, while from 1934-1951 it grew wings. Until 1959, the company went with a more circular design until introducing the familiar widget in that year. Variations on the widget accompanied by the company name would continue to be a major part of the company’s visual identification, with the widget finally winning out as the sole design element in 1987.
Red has largely been Delta’s color since the beginning. It the early years, the company stuck with a simple red and black before moving on to a multi-colored, busier approach in 1930. After 1930, though, red would become dominant – usually alongside blue, all the way through the modern day. Delta’s color changes have largely been part of major marketing changes and mergers with other companies, though Delta has wisely kept the identifying red throughout every shift.
Nothing has changed more over the years than Delta’s font. It’s always been simple, though the company has played around with a number of font designs. The original font was Greek-inspired, though that was quickly dropped. The font would remain simple 1930-1945, at which time it would be replaced with a more art deco design. This would last until 1959, when Delta would design on a font that’s essentially the one that’s been in use ever since.
Delta’s logo is clearly influenced quite a bit by other airlines. The first logo change, for example, was influenced by Delta’s predecessor company. Many of its changes over the years have been brought about by mergers and acquisitions, initially bringing in elements from other airlines. Today’s logo, though, is one that really stands alone.
If you want to see the influence of the Delta Airlines logo, you just need to go to an airport. American’s logo, for example, draws heavily from Delta’s. So too did a number of now defunct (or purchased) airlines like Continental. Delta was definitely a major factor in encouraging other airlines to adopt simple, easily-identifiable logos for their planes.
- Delta is the number-one rated airline in the United States.
- Delta has its own museum in Atlanta.
- Delta was the first airline to ban smoking on all of its flights
- Delta started life as the Huff Daland Dusting Company in 1925.
- More than 180 million people fly on Delta every year.
- Delta began offering access to Wi-Fi on their flights all the way back in 2008.
- The name ‘Delta’ almost certainly comes from the Greek letter.
The Delta Airlines logo is one of the company’s best assets. It makes the company easy to identify from a distance, even though the logo itself is fairly simple. It’s changed and evolved over the years that the company has been active, but one thing is for sure – the company’s found something that works.