Which Social Media Icons and Logos Can I Print on Promo Items?
Most people who buy promotional items use them to promote their brand and business. But more and more we’re seeing people use promo products to also promote their social media channels. And that’s a great idea! If you’re going to be giving people some custom mouse pads, it’s smart thinking to direct them to your Facebook page.
However, since social networks are individual companies, they all have their own rules for how to use their trademarked images. For example, there are a lot of rules to follow if you want to use the Facebook logo on the web, in print, or on TV.
Let’s talk about some of the most popular social networks and their guidelines for using their names and logos on your promotional items. By learning all of the rules now you’ll have a better idea for how to setup up your promo items when it’s time to order!
Facebook is by far the most popular social network, which means that it’s a great idea to direct your customers to your company page or group. However you can’t just copy and paste the Facebook logo from their website and call it a day. There are multiple things that need to be checked before it’s okay to print the logo on your promotional items.
First of all, according to the brand guidelines from Facebook itself, you can only use the Facebook ‘f’ logo to refer to:
Your presence on Facebook, such as your Page, timeline, group, app or event
Your implementation of Facebook on your website
Your product’s integration with Facebook, such as ‘For use with Facebook’
Content that originates from Facebook
You are not allowed to use the Facebook logo to publicize anything other than what is listed above. You also cannot just use the ‘f’ logo by itself. It must be accompanied with a call to action. Examples of proper calls to action include:
- Like us on Facebook
- Follow us on Facebook
You can also include the URL to your Facebook page as long as it’s in direct proximity with the ‘f’ logo and the call to action.
The only exception to this rule is if you use the ‘f’ logo side-by-side with other social media logos.
Check out this chart for acceptable and non-acceptable uses of the Facebook logo.
Any use of the Facebook logo must have space around it so it appears clean and uncluttered. You cannot use the logo in a way that “implies partnership, sponsorship or endorsement.” The Facebook logo cannot be the most distinctive feature of your promotion item, it cannot be used “on materials associated with pornography, illegal activities, or other materials that violate the Facebook Terms,” and the design and color cannot be changed.
A black and white version of the logo can be used only if there are technical limitations in the printing process.
On Twitter as well? Then you can also use your promotional products to direct customers to your Twitter account. Luckily you have a few options for how you can use the Twitter logo on your personalized items.
When it comes to graphics, you can only use the current Twitter bird in either blue or white. No other colors, alterations, or other logos are allowed. There must be at least 150% buffer space around the bird. That buffer space is shown in the logos below:
The icon also needs to be accompanied with a call to action or your Twitter account URL. The Twitter logo cannot be larger than your own branding.
These are acceptable ways to promote your Twitter account:
- The text “Follow Us On Twitter”
- The text “Follow Us On” with the Twitter bird logo
- The text “Follow Us On” with the Twitter bird logo and your brand’s username
- The Twitter bird logo followed by the text “Twitter” and with your brand’s Twitter URL in close proximity.
Check out the following chart for some acceptable uses.
Neither of the old Twitter logos (the lowercase T and the bird that faced directly right) can be used. Additionally, your company or brand name cannot be printed immediately above the Twitter bird logo. And last, but not least, you cannot use the Twitter logo to suggest any kind of partnership with Twitter.
Whether you’re looking to promote your new web series or just want to direct customers to the cool product videos on your brand’s channel, having a YouTube logo on your custom items is very important.
Luckily YouTube is really cool about letting people use their logo in promotional materials. There are a few easy rules to follow.
First of all, the YouTube logo cannot be altered in anyway. You have to either use the horizontal, up-to-date, full-color logo or a one-color version. YouTube only wants their old stacked logo to be used in social media instances when it cannot be avoided.
If you are printing a row of social media icons, they prefer that you use the new logo.
Unlike some of the social networks, you cannot use the YouTube logo as part of a sentence. If you want to use a call to action like “You can find us on YouTube,” you can only use text. You can place the YouTube logo somewhere else on your item.
As always, you cannot use the logo “to imply a deep relationship or strategic partnership with YouTube.”
When it comes to social media logo usage, Pinterest seems to be the most enthusiastic out of all of the social networks. They want you promote your presence on Pinterest – they just want to make sure that you are following their rules while you do.
First of all, Pinterest requests that you use one of these logos or badges that you can easily download from their website:
Then you promote your Pinterest account in one of these ways:
- The badge followed by the URL of your account
- The name of your company followed by “on” and the logo, URL underneath
- The name of your company followed by “on” and the badge, URL underneath
- Badge within a line of social media icons
So visually, these options look like this:
Again, you cannot use any of the Pinterest Marks to suggest “Pinterest is sponsoring your promotion or is formally affiliated with it.”
LinkedIn “does not permit use the use of its Marks on manufactured products.” A few of our suppliers have sent a request of permission to LinkedIn, but at this time we are unable to print their logo on your items.
Unfortunately Google does not permit the use of the Google+ icon on any kind of marketing materials. You will not be able to publicize your Google+ account on promotional items.
While Tumblr is happy to give you high-resolution versions of its logo, at this time they request that you don’t use their logo on merchandise. Their guidelines are pretty clear: “You shouldn’t use the Tumblr Marks on any merchandise without our permission.”
You probably saw this one coming, but Instagram also does not allow their logo to be used on merchandise. They will allow it on packaging, but not “on merchandise, such as toys, apparel or accessories.” Some of our suppliers have reached out to Instagram to seek permission, but at this time you are unable to use their logo on your custom items.
You also cannot print the Vine logo on your promotional products. Vine’s current policy is “The Vine marks should not be used on any merchandise or tangible goods.”
The check-in service Foursquare is really cool because they provide a graphic for you to use as a window cling in your brick-and-mortar business. However, they do not allow the use of their logo on promotional items. They state that you “may not use the Foursquare Marks on any merchandise without our permission.”
While Yelp offers logos, buttons, and badges for small business owners, there is no specific policy on using their logos on merchandise or marketing materials listed on their website. However, I reached out to Yelp to ask them directly about the use of their logo on promotional items. Their official policy (as of an email on November 11, 2013) is as follows:
Don’t use our mark in a way that implies our endorsement
Don’t use our mark in a way that creates confusion
Don’t use our mark in connection with objectionable materials
Don’t use our mark to disparage us
Don’t modify our mark in any way, including proportions, colors, or fonts
Don’t forget to include the appropriate trademark symbol (e.g., Yelp ®)
We reserve the right to change these terms, or rescind our permission altogether, for any or no reason.
So as long as you are not implying that you have a partnership with Yelp and follow these guidelines, there’s no reason why you can’t use your promotional items to encourage your customers to leave you a review on Yelp. Sticking with the approved logos and badges will keep you within their guidelines.
Want to check out the full branding guidelines for these social networks? You can find them all right here: Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Google+, LinkedIn, Tumblr, Instagram, Vine, and Foursquare.
I know that was a ton of information to get through, so let’s do a quick recap before wrapping up this post.
You can print (with restrictions): Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, and Yelp.
You cannot print: LinkedIn, Google+, Tumblr, Instagram, Vine, and Foursquare.
Know that if any of these policies change or if we receive special permission, I will make sure to update this post to reflect the most current and accurate information.
Now that you know about which social media icons you can use, you’re probably wondering how you can print them on your items.
There are one-color options of the social media logos, but they all really shine when represented with their full colors. So if you wanted to guide your customers to as many social channels as possible, you should consider using a custom item that has full-color printing. Full-color printing is also known as digital printing and CMYK printing.
Full-color printed items like sticky notes or mouse pads have lots of room and you can print with as many colors as you want. These would allow you to print your business’ logo and all of the approved social media logos without having to make any compromises on colors.
Still unsure about how you can use some of these social media logos? Luckily our art department knows exactly how and when you can use these logos. So if you have a specific idea for your promotional items make sure that you talk to your representative so you can craft the perfect giveaway item.
Whether you have questions about social media logos or can’t wait to get started on your order, we would love to hear from you! You can contact us by email (firstname.lastname@example.org), by phone (1-866-312-5646), via our live chat, or by leaving a comment below.
Have you used any social media logos on your promo items before? Which of these guidelines surprised you? Which icon would you like to be able to use on your promo items?