The Orkin Logo
Before the company had an official logo, Otto often used pictures of rats and the tagline “Otto The Rat Man” in his advertisements in telephone directories and calling cards. As Otto developed a public image for the company, he experimented with other images such as a “Modern Pied Piper” logo, with rats following a piper, even though this did not receive the response he expected. He once told a newspaper reporter, “People don’t like to see pictures of rats or other pests in telephone directory advertisements or elsewhere.”
To help produce a new image for Orkin, Otto solicited the help of Merle “Tommy” Thompson, advertising and promotion manager with the Atlanta Georgian-American newspaper, in 1926. Tommy Thompson designed the red and white logo that is still used today and created an advertising campaign for Orkin in exchange for monthly pest control service.
The logo first ran in the August 1926 issue of the City Builder. Early advertisements featured text such as “Creators of Sanitation” or “Exterminating Company Inc.” around the logo, but it quickly stood on its own without the text as Orkin’s brand recognition grew. By 1928, Orkin’s first company truck sported the logo. Then, when Otto first issued company-wide standard uniforms in 1947, the logo appeared on jackets, caps and shirts. Since then, Orkin’s red diamond logo has appeared on uniforms and trucks, as well as in Orkin’s print, web and television advertisements as one of the most recognizable icons of American business.
From hats and ties to writing pads and commuter bags, Orkin produces a wide range of merchandise sporting the red diamond logo. While this Orkin-branded merchandise is not available for purchase to the general public, managers at Orkin branches throughout the country can order these Orkin-branded items for their employees.