Heineken has had a number of fantastic marketing plans over the years. It’s as well-known an import beer as any, with a look and a taste that fits right in with the palette of many beer drinkers. If you’re familiar with the brand, you’re probably also familiar with the Heineken logo and the can. If you want to take a look at how Heineken has grown over the years, it’s often interesting to look at how the logo has changed as well. You might be surprised by what you find.
Heineken Logo Design Elements
If one word describes the Heineken logo, it’s ‘busy’. There’s a lot going on in the logo – the company’s name, the brewing location, a product description, a few design elements, and of course the red star. There’s much more going on than one would expect from the average beer logo, but it manages to look high-class rather than over-crowded. It’s a logo that stands out on a shelf and makes the drinker feel like they’re drinking something more than just a beer – they’re drinking a high-class product.
Changes and Evolution
The basic shape of the Heineken logo has been in place since 1974. Before that, though, it went through a few changes before finally getting to a more comfortable shape. The early shapes were ovals, first featuring a factory and then moving to feature first the product and then the brand name. Surprisingly, the star on the logo didn’t show up to 1966 – and it didn’t become the more familiar star until 1974. The shape has always featured a great deal of data, though, but has always managed to get away with it without looking too over-crowded.
Heineken has gone through a few colors over the years. The original color was red, but the green came in as early as 1948. Green and red have been the major colors ever since, though the star on the label didn’t turn fully red until the 1990s. This lack of color change actually helps the company to keep a sense of brand awareness about it, as anyone who sees a green can immediately think of Heineken. One has to appreciate a color scheme that can actually last for over fifty years.
Originally, the Heineken logo didn’t even feature the name of the company – just the early name of the brewery. The first real logo, which was put in place in the 1940s, more clearly advertised the fact that it was a pilsner than the fact that it came from Heineken. The company’s name would be front and center starting in the 1960s and stay in the same place until the present day. In fact, the text-heavy logo hasn’t actually changed in any appreciable way since the 1960s – something about which most beer brands cannot boast.
If you’re looking for influences for the Heineken logo, don’t look at Holland – look at Germany. There are several brands from that company that have the same kind of over-scripted logo, and they’re quite successful. The idea of simplifying things might be appealing to American audiences, but Heineken has always banked on having a European flair. As such, any design changes are likely to come from major shifts in advertising on that continent. Arguably, you can see this best in the Budweiser logo, which, even though represents an American beer brand, has something of that European vibe precisely because its logo is so flowery.
Very few brands have followed in Heineken’s footsteps. The busy logo isn’t an idea that most can pull off, so most businesses don’t try. There are a few copycats, but most of them are trying not to follow Heineken’s design but trade off of the company’s reputation.
- Heineken was founded by Henry Pierre Heineken.
- Heineken was founded in Amsterdam but is brewed in 140 countries.
- Heineken is the second largest brewer in the world.
- You can still visit the original Heineken brewery in Amsterdam and take a tour.
- Heineken is the largest brewer in Europe and has over 170 different beer brands.
Heineken’s logo is one of a kind. It shouldn’t work, but it does. It’s the kind of logo you’d caution others not to design, but you can’t deny that it works for the company. History, a unique color, and a great name work together to ensure that Heineken will always have a chance to make their logo stand out.