You may think designing a business logo is simple and straightforward. How hard could it be to paintbrush a swoosh on a piece of white paper and ask for thousands of dollars for it? Or draw three circles inside a simple triangle and expecting to hit it big in the advertising business? The problem is that designing a business logo is incredibly difficult. That simple swoosh, although it really is just a swoosh, represents what a company is all about, its credo, its products and its public image. A logo makes it easily recognizable on the market, makes its message known to customers and promotes its products.
Basically, a logo is the main visual identity of a company and it is the first thing you come across when you find out about a new company. When we recognize a logo, we immediately remember the company’s products, industry, target market and, what’s more important, we establish a personal connection with it – we determine our overall attitude towards the company.
For the budding graphic designers who just started their careers in business logo design, but also for anyone who may be interested in this topic, here is a list of some of the best tips coming from leading industry experts:
- Know the company and understand the brand
Logos are, for most people, the first thing they see and interact with when faced with a new brand or company. It is essentially a swift introduction to what the whole company is about.
Does it try to make you smile? Is this a food or beverage company? What does it sell?
Although not with a direct answer, all these questions must be tackled, and the logo needs to transmit at least some bits of information to the new user or customer. This is why knowing the brand you are designing a logo for is critical. You’ll have to brainstorm and write down what a company is about, what mood it inspires, and what visual identity can reflect its spoken identity. Think of a deeper meaning and don’t be too shallow: after all, an auto company doesn’t necessarily have to have a steering wheel for a logo. Instead, try to evoke an emotion, a feeling and a state of mind, both to its customers and to its competition.
Another thing to keep in mind is to make your logo genuine and sincere – always know what the logo is about and what it means. Just drawing a blue rectangle as a logo for a fishing company will be hard to explain and justify, so try to be straightforward and honest in your design approach.
- Bring something new to the table
Chances are your client is active in a business sector that has tens, if not hundreds, of other competitors. Let’s say your client is a newly opened seafood restaurant. The problem? There are 22 other seafood restaurants in the city and this new restaurant needs a cool business logo to stand out from the crowd.
This is what most businesses struggle with: they can’t create their own unique visual identity – and it’s your job to help them make a splash on the market. You need to create something unique, clever and, most importantly, different from your competition. You could try to imitate, but add a new element, a new interpretation of the same theme. Most expert designers say it is practically impossible to create something new and completely fresh, so try to go with new, out-of-the-box elements built on established formats.
- Keep it simple
Simple business logos are the most successful: Nike’s swoosh, Mercedes-Benz tri-star and FedEx, to name a few. When it comes to logos, simplicity is your best bet – you immediately transmit an idea and a feeling, the company is easily recognizable and customers remember the logo.
Keep in mind that logos are now appearing on multiple devices and mediums – outdoor ads, billboards, newspapers, clothes, pens, on computer and tablet screens. Your logo must be easily adaptable to all these
scenarios and must be able to communicate the brand to customers. Logos also have to be simple to stand the test of time. Good logos remain basically the same through multiple decades – most companies only choose to slightly alter the typeface every decade or so.
If you have difficulty with producing a company logo, asking for advice or ideas from fellow marketers or colleagues can amp up your productivity. Joining an online community for marketers, such as Kreativa, can not only help with determining a logo design, but a great resource for future marketing questions you may have.
Oscar King is a small business owner and freelance writer who shares insights and tips into effective marketing. If you would like to learn more about Oscar, you can check out his google+ profile.
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