New branding and marketing site direction


I personally like the current logo a lot. For me the different colours signal the versatility that Hugo has – it’s not a monotone platform that generates just one type of website.

I also like the font of the current logo. The thick, uppercase letters feel strong and durable for me. For some reason it makes me think of strong wood I can build on.

The new logo feels a bit weak to me. It’s monotone white looks single purposed, it’s lowercase letters feel less confident. I think Hugo may be proud of itself, so at least one capital letter seems appropriate. The logo itself feels like something you can throw given the suggestion of upward movement, like a Japanese Shuriken. I hope people don’t throw Hugo nor use it to wound others. :slight_smile:

But that’s of course just my opinion, and I’m not a logo designer and branding expert.

But more importantly than discussing a logo:

I’d very much love a more comprehensive marketing plan for Hugo and get more exposure for this project[1].

But I don’t believe in the assumption that a nice landing page and logo are going to help. When I talk with people about Hugo and read what they say after their first exposure, it’s often in line of “I didn’t knew this handy tool existed”.

While branding and a good frontpage is of course part of the puzzle, it doesn’t help when people are simply not aware of Hugo and don’t visit the website. Because of that I see much more potential in off-site marketing.

[1]: Although someone needs to do that on a consistent basis. And the current Hugo team is busy enough already and we can’t ask them to execute a marketing or branding plan.

Perhaps we should start this topic by asking who is willing to invest time and energy in helping marketing Hugo on a consistent basis? Then based on those inputs we/you/others can come up with a marketing plan to promote Hugo.

But first discussing and making a marketing plan and then finding out no one has the bandwidth to implement it might be an inefficient approach.

Please note that I’m not discouraging you (atjinsu). I think it’s pretty cool to have more Hugo marketing and I’m sure you have plenty of good ideas for it. I just hope you don’t become disheartened when you invest a lot of time and energy into building a plan, and then only to learn that there aren’t enough volunteers to implement it. :neutral_face:


My main problems with the current logo work (emphasis is mine, because I think design looks smashing) is

  1. We have 2. Which I suspect is coming from @spf13 getting several suggestions from some designer, and not being able to decide … I understand the need for both a vertical and horizontal version, but they should be … similar.

  2. They are owned by @spf13 – which mean we cannot create coffee cups or stickers without asking him.

Steve has said that we can fix 2 by putting an open source license on them. This has not gotten the priority it deserves. My problem is, I don’t know what license would be good for that artwork. On one side, I want the project to be able to use the logo as it sees fit, I also want the logo to be used in Wikipedia articles about Hugo, but we have to think about all the people popping up with “The Hugo CMS” etc. that looks kind of official with that logo (whatever official means in this context). If someone wants to think about this, please do, but in another thread.

I’m not sure 1) is a problem. I’m not a designer, but I’m a typography buff, and I see some issues with the current set. But I’m not sure it’s important enough. Being an open source project, we may have different requirements for this. It should look good on a sticker (the hexagon does that), it should stick out in a Twitter feed (the pastel colours does that). I’m not sure we need the “growing faster bit”. I see a tremendous interest in Hugo, and we need some proper AI to handle GitHub issues and do support here before we grow any further.

The outlined design above is very good, my main concern about this isn’t the design itself, but … time. We have to let these questions sink a little.


I’ve given this some thought and also went through a similar thing with a recent project.

The logo should remain copyrighted by me. Copyright law permits using it for things like wikipedia, etc under fair use. I’m happy to permit anyone to use it for things that further the project. I’m not ok with someone incorporating it into their commercial enterprise (without permission). For example, I don’t want people to print Hugo shirts using the logo and sell them for personal profit. I’m fine with this happening if the proceeds go back to the project. Keeping it copyrighted gives us this protection, an open source license doesn’t.

As for an update to the logos. I’m not opposed to doing so, however we should go through a full design process and I’m going to be a bit opinionated about it. This current set of designs doesn’t work for me. I’d rather see a proposal with say 6 different designs and then @bep and I pick the ones we like the best and we go from there.


Maybe you or @bep should make an Open Call for the redesign of the Hugo project logotype.

I would like to participate with design proposals for a new Hugo logo but so would others. An Open Call with a deadline and a decision process would be the best way forward IMO.

Also it would be best if there are some kind of specifications that need to be taken into account for the logo design e.g. hexagon stickers, favicons, social media banners, templates for New Releases announcements, is there a need for a mascot? etc.

The current Hugo site is fine as is since it has a neutral color scheme and a minimal design. A new logo identity could fit in without requiring a full redesign. Maybe a few color accents here and there but that’s something to be seen.

Looking forward to working on this.


The “fair use” on Wikipedia is only usable on the English Wikipedia version, which goes to say that copyright is hard and there are no universal laws. And I really don’t care if the Hugo logo is on Wikipedia. But that is a little beside the point; my main concern is the time it would take away from other stuff.


As a Hugo user of course I’m more interested in new features, bug fixes and stability.

So I for one understand your concern about time.

But then again what would Github be without the Octocat?

Yes logos may seem irrelevant in software development but still they add value and are essential for the identity of a project.


To be perfectly honest I see such projects (and take it as just one of these emotional crippled developers of stuff that can’t put their logical thinking in nice words) as an attempt of people, who don’t know how to code, but still want to contribute.

There are plenty of place to contribute without knowing programming or Golang:

  • adding stuff to the documentation
  • finding an easy visual way to convey how template priority is done (please, someone use as much time on this as people spend on redesigning the site :slight_smile: )
  • answering questions in the community forum

One sample of useful “non core programmers” work is the new script switch thingy on the documentation site.

I am not saying that the redesign is bad - it’s kind of an attempt to take a 2017 design (strong colors) to 2018 (gradients), but somehow it’s kind of a “too early” thing here. Also - I am visually impaired and find the colors of the “old” (muahah) website and logo perfect for Hugo.

What exactly is not working with the old design? Only if it is harming “the product” there would be reason to think about changing it?


In addition :slight_smile:

Add more sophisticated templates and provide a comparison view
Add an automatic dynamic site translator to HUGO


As someone with no skin in the game, here are my two cents:

The current design and logo are more than adequate, in fact I choose Hugo last year in part because them. I think they’re simple and clean and beautiful.

If a designer wants to help out this project, IMO, the best return for the community would be in updating / adding examples for the docs, or contributing to the themes. A superb theme will go farther in converting people to Hugo than an updated logo. Especially when the current logo is so solid.


completely agree with you here @cmod

A greater set of better/more flexible themes would be a bigger attracting factor for new users to convert IMHO :+1:


Keep this on topic please.


As a branding and product designer, I see many ways how Hugo logo can be improved with a very thoughtful and documented process… Once the brand gets certain notoriety is better not change it a lot. It loses their essence, look at the Firefox logo, they’ve been updating it since 2003. Full redesigns are only necessary when a brand has a reputation they don’t want or when nobody is connecting with their story/brand. If it works, don’t change it … improve it.

I know @atjinsu wanted to help but the new proposed logo looks too off brand of Hugo, too serious / luxury like.
I like the actual colors and I can see ways of improving the logo without changing it. By just adjusting the letter as the H looks close to leave the hexagon, looking for a similarly friendly form font.


With small changes

And you can see it start to look a little better.
I did not consider this to be a formal proposal as I just did the changes in a couple of minutes to give an example.

I’m happy to help the community as a designer, I really love the project, it helped me redesign my site with a speed and flexibility that I didn’t know it was possible.
I’m open to contributing to logo/landing/design improvements, template designs, etc.

BTW how can you add sites to the showcase? I think mine is a good example for designers that think Hugo is too complicated and for devs only.


If you think this falls into the showcase category (I don’t think personal sites/portfolios do)

  1. Fork
  2. Copy/Paste the template
  3. Edit it into your showcase
  4. PR!

(I like your logo proposal for what it’s worth)


Thank you and no worries, I was wondering and pretty sure you’re right.

A Personal site probably is not suitable for the showcase section. :+1:t3:


Semi OT

I just found out that there is a brand manual for Go:

It was published last month.