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How to Design your Business Logo
06 January 2016 | Web Design
A great logo is more than images and words, a good logo tells a story about your business–who you are, what you do and what you stand for. That’s a lot to ask of one piece of art, which is why it’s important that you take the time to do it right. Fortunately, you don’t have to do it alone. The steps below will take you through the process of designing a logo that will successfully brand you in the marketplace.
Determine the primary function of your logo. A logo represents your brand through the use of shape, fonts, color and images. Being clear on why you need a logo can guide your design.
- Boost recognition. Is your business new or competing in a field with a lot of other players? Having a strong logo can help clients recognize your brand more readily.
- Create memorability. Consumers shop with their eyes and logos can be easier to remember than names, products and services. Over time, a customer comes to associate your logo with your business.
- Create trust. Part of bringing in and keeping clients is based on their willingness to trust you. A solid logo that conveys your honesty and integrity can help put clients at ease.
- Enhance admiration. If clients already have a good impression of your business, you can build on that by creating a logo that is well-regarded for its good looks, cleverness or effective simplicity.
Think about your target market. It’s important to be clear on who your client is and customize the look of your logo to appeal to those who will be using your services.
- A logo for a florist shop could incorporate a whimsical font and a bright color scheme; this wouldn’t work so well for an auto body repair garage.
- A logo for a law firm must communicate integrity and strength; not necessarily the look that would work well for a catering business.
Decide whether to incorporate your company’s name into the logo. Of course, you want to build name recognition for your business, but making the name part of your logo design may not always be a good idea.
- Include the name if it is reasonably distinctive but not yet a household word or if your marketing funds are limited and your goal is to build name
- Think of all the different ways you plan to use your logo. Picture the smallest size you may need; if the business name won’t be readable when the logo is the size of a thumbnail, it may be best to leave it out of the design.
- Do not include the name if it is too generic, too long, doesn’t translate well globally (if that’s a consideration) or lacks personality. Leave the name out, too, if you must put your logo on a product, such as a sneaker or a handbag
Follow the company’s color scheme. If your company has already established the use of certain colors in its signage, advertising and other materials, it’s important that those colors are reflected in the logo.
- Consistent use of colors builds familiarity. You want customers to be able to mentally “link” your logo to the company.
- If your company has branded itself with specific colors, the public will have developed a subconscious association with those colors.
- If you don’t yet have an established color scheme for your business, do some research on the psychology of colors so that you can choose appropriately. For example, red signifies strength, passion, energy and confidence but it can also signal danger.
Be inspired by but don’t copy successful logos. While it might be tempting to create something that looks like your favorite corporate logo, it will communicate an unintended message to your audience
- Look at logos of other business similar to yours. Ask yourself what you like and don’t like about them. What works and what doesn’t. Don’t get overwhelmed by looking at too many examples—10 or 12 should be more than enough to give you ideas of what to do and what to avoid.
- A successful logo should be simple, memorable, timeless and appropriate. Keep these as goals as you play around with ideas.
- If you’re struggling for ideas, trying using different key word to conduct searches online or use a thesaurus to move your thinking in some new directions.
Keep it simple. Designing a logo is an exercise in restraint. While it may be tempting to try to convey a multitude of messages with your design, trying to do too much will sabotage the success of your business logo.
- Avoid too many colors, multiple fonts and layered images. A confusing or cluttered logo won’t convey a clear message.
- If there are too many visual elements in your logo, it will be difficult for the customer to process. They won’t know where to look or what it means.
- Practically speaking, a simple logo is easier and less expensive to reproduce. Since your logo may appear on a variety of items—from letterhead to advertisements to tote bags—simplicity could save you money in the long-run.