Between 2000-2009 the percentage of corporate logos featuring images of leaves more than tripled, going from around 1% to as high as 3.87%.And no wonder: there’s no quicker way of signifying “growth” and “Earth friendly” than with a stylised green frond.
But according to data from Emblemetric, the glory days of the generic leaf logo might be over. In 2010 and 2011 the amount of leaf logos began to decline for the first time in more than a decade.
“It appears that the leaf is transitioning from logo design trend to logo design cliché,” Emblemetric says.
Here’s a chart of leaf usage by sector:
Big losses (of leaves) in the agriculture and beverage sector coupled with mild losses in chemicals and insurance businesses contributed heavily to the overall decline.
For brands, being perceived as environmentally friendly was of great importance in the 2000s—likely leading to the rise in leaves. So does that mean brands don’t care about being environmentally friendly anymore?
Probably not. Many of the companies who adopted the leaf had nothing to actually do with sectors where being environmentally friendly was of major concern.
In addition, Emblemetric notes the rapid rise in abandoned trademarks with the generic leaf over the last few years—something that suggest the decline is likely to continue.
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