There are few aspects of business more straightforward and essential than logo design. Whatever kind of business you have, you are going to need a logo. How well your logo is constructed can make a surprisingly big difference in the success of your business overall.
Purpose of a Logo
Every business needs a logo, but too often, businesses overlook the reasons for having a logo and get caught up with the knowledge that they need to create one. However, understanding why you have a logo is crucial to establishing what your logo should look like. Here are some of the purposes of having a logo:
- Be recognizable. This is the purpose of a logo that most people are familiar with. Every business needs a logo so that it can stand out from its competition.
- Communicate brand. A logo should be in line with your brand color scheme, text, and general tone to communicate your brand image.
- Inspire an emotion. Logos are a powerful way to create associations between your business and certain emotion like confidence, trust, or superiority over competitors.
How to Design a Great Logo
Too many businesses assume that it won’t be very challenging to develop a good logo. After all, logos are small, simple images, so how hard can it be to build a decent one? In fact, designing a great logo takes a good deal of research, effort, and understanding of graphic design. Here are a few of the steps that typically go into designing a logo.
1. Interview the Customer
A quality graphic designer will have an in-depth discussion about your company, your goals, your market, and what you want from your logo and other branding elements. Great graphic designers know that building a logo goes much further than just the logo design.
They’ll want to understand areas of your business as well. Your graphic designer will emerge from this interview or series of interviews with a design scheme, from which they will conduct the rest of their design.
2. Market Research
Once your graphic designer understands what you want from them and what you believe your business needs, they will conduct their own research to determine how in-line your ideas are with what will be successful in your market.
If your graphic designer has no push back or ideas about your suggestions or design for a logo, look elsewhere. A good graphic designer will have their own perspective and research about what works best in your industry.
Don’t be afraid to take advantage of this outsider’s perspective. Many of the best logos have been designed by somebody outside of the company and are far from what the company may initially have designed. Sometimes, the best way to represent your company well is to listen to the perspective of someone who is looking at your company from the outside.
3. Logo Research
Once your graphic designer has a good perspective on what your industry is all about, they will start looking into what logos have worked well for other businesses like yours. They may look into logos that have been popular for a long time.
Good designers don’t research other logos with the intention of imitation or even seeking inspiration. Rather, they’re learning what types of logos have had longevity in a given industry. This helps your graphic designer plan a logo that will have similar longevity for your company.
Your graphic designer should be up to date on ongoing research about what works in logo design. For instance, research has found that a sense of movement in the logo may cause customers to look at it longer and remember it better. Your graphic designer should know whether your company would benefit from a logo that creates a sense of movement in this way.
When research is completed, the graphic designer will begin to conceptualize what the finished logo should contain. This process will require multiple sketches, often both hand-drawn and computer-generated.
Despite the prevalence of computers in graphic design, most quality graphic designers do some planning on paper as well. Physical sketches are very quick and easy to create.
Once your graphic designer has considered a number of different options and sketched up some designs, it will be time for them to present them to you. Logos are usually presented in a straightforward PDF format, but also they will also be displayed in context to help you visualize just what a logo will really look like.
It is important that your designer offers you logo examples in context. Logos are even more prone to looking different in presentation than most other types of graphics. This is because logos are displayed to the clients at a larger size to let you see the details.
In the real world, logos will typically be very small. Your graphic designer should do more than put designs in front of you for your consideration. They should go into some detail about how different logo ideas were arrived at.
Discussion between you and your graphic designer will likely occur throughout the time that you are being presented with the logos. However, if at all possible, it is best to try to save your questions and potential concerns until the end of the presentation so that you have a thorough grasp of what exactly the graphic designer is trying to do with their logo suggestions.
However, once it is time to discuss, do not hold back with your critiques and questions. A logo may seem like a simple thing, but it is vital, and it is one of the things you least want to have to change once your business is already established and underway.
This can make logo design anxiety-provoking since you need to make an important decision about how your logo looks before your business is really off the ground. Don’t be afraid to engage with your graphic designer in a discussion about why a particular decision was made and any anxiety that you might have about suggested logos or the process used to create them.
Once you thoroughly discuss your concerns in logo design, it will be time for your graphic designer to build and deliver a logo to you. The finished logo should have a few options for when you need to print it in monochrome or when color options are limited.
It should look great in print, even when printed from a less-than-high-quality printer. It should be simple enough to be clearly recognizable and deliver the message that you want to deliver.
It should also draw a clear connection to your business. A quality graphic designer will continue discussing the logo with you as it is completed and will be willing to make edits even to the final design if it does not line up with what you had discussed.
Pick a Quality Graphic Designer for Your Logo Design
A logo may seem simple, but there are few aspects of graphic design more important to your business in the long-term. This is not an area where you want to skimp on quality graphic design. Choose a designer who can offer you the highest quality graphic logo that reflects your business well.