I am designing a series of landing pages for a company I work. There are a number of other company's logos included and the design would look much better if the logos were grayed out. From looking at each company's brand guidelines, I see that most allow for this apart from a few, but my managers insist that company permission is necessary for this.

Is this true?

If not, what's the best way to argue for this?

i.e. the argument that this is a fairly common practice doesn't seem to stick

  • 2
    Our brand book for one would never allow anyone to use our logo greyed out online. The only instance where this is allowed is when printing in greyscale.
    – PieBie
    Apr 14, 2016 at 15:27
  • 2
    If the boss says so then that's the answer.. I'm not sure what other authority you're looking for. Looking at other brand guidelines is pointless, the only one that matters is the brand you are working on.
    – Cai
    Apr 14, 2016 at 15:28
  • Just to clarify we're talking about several logos more than half have published brand guidelines that allow for grey logo the others I couldn't find the guidelines for Apr 14, 2016 at 16:09
  • see. .if the worlds best brands have a grayed out version.. you can have one 2nd version other than the original, if there is no change in logo, a 2nd version of arguing would definitely work!.
    – MFarooqi
    Apr 14, 2016 at 20:24

2 Answers 2


Follow the brand guidelines. They are there for a reason. I know it sucks but that's how it is. If you spent hours of your life creating detailed brand guidelines just for people to ignore it, you wouldn't be happy (I'm not anyway).

If there aren't any brand guidelines (you should actually request these, not just search the company's website) then by all means go ahead. If you are working with a group of logos with different guidelines, I would suggest consistency—if any of the brand guidelines you are working with don't allow you to do what you want, don't do it at all.


The reason you want to give for graying out the logos is that they need to be downplayed in relation to your own branding and style. They are shown probably as examples of partners or some such thing, they are secondary to your product/company logo and should visually reflect that. You don't have to follow other companies brand guidelines in work that is not for them– they are called "guidelines" for a reason. As long as you aren't altering the intent of the logo– but just graying out so the colors don't conflict with the branding/style you're trying to convey– I highly doubt you will have anyone knocking at your door complaining.

  • Although this may be true in a lot of cases, a lot of companies will come knocking at your door complaining—or worse.
    – Cai
    Apr 19, 2016 at 20:56
  • And it's very possible that those guidelines aren't just guidelines but contractual.
    – Cai
    Apr 19, 2016 at 20:57
  • I'm curious to know of examples when a company "knocked on someones door" regarding "partner/client logos." I can only think of maybe a hand full that would waste their time doing that, but most of them provide a robust set of guidelines often including a greyscale/B&W logo. Keep in mind, they're often partner/client logos, it's best practice to get permission to put their logo on your website.
    – JWhiteUX
    May 10, 2017 at 21:34

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