There are a lot of factors to consider when developing a killer logo design, as well as a great number of challenges. It’s hardly surprising that so many logo designs are revealed to the world which simply do or say nothing positive about the companies they are representing. Or worse, upset existing followers of the company by failing to meet the expectations they have of the brand.
So what is it that makes a logo design great? And what should you really consider when you are developing your own company logo and brand?
Here are our 10 top tips for making sure that your logo design becomes much more than just another label.
Let’s start with practicality. A logo needs to be versatile and easily reproduced onto a wide variety of different material at a range of different scales. It therefore needs be legible and easily understood when printed on a business card at a small scale, but it also needs to be able to cope with being printed on large company signage.
The most effective way of ensuring that a logo design is versatile and easily reproduced is to keep it simple. Any text in the logo needs to be legible, and images need to be instantaneously understood. Think of the famous Nike ‘tick’ for example. This has stood the test of time for it’s simplicity and instant recognition. So if your logo designs starts to become overly complex, busy or loses the essence of what the business is about, then it either needs to be scaled back considerably or scrapped altogether.
Most importantly your logo needs to be relevant to the company it is representing. While designing the logo you must remember to ask yourself, who and what is it for? It’s fair to say that it is unlikely your logo will tell your target audience exactly what the business does and how it does it, for example the well known Microsoft logo doesn’t use an image of a computer, but it evokes openness, simplicity, accessibility and therefore universally appeals to it’s wide target audience.
Colour can say a lot about a business through it’s logo without even perhaps realising. For example, research shows that blue is the most common colour for brand design. It gives the impression that the company is trustworthy, dependable, secure and responsible. Red on the other hand has an aggressive, energetic and attention grabbing tone, whereas green gives the impression of wealth, health and prestige, and so on. Therefore it is important to chose your colours carefully depending on the personality of the company.
It is also important that the logo works as a mono logo (i.e. single colour) The beauty of this is that it can also be reversed out in order for it to work on any background colour or even a photograph.
Design Note: Logos should ALWAYS be created in a CMYK colour palette, and converted to RGB for web if necessary.
When it comes to logo design there is a huge number of trends lurking around. It is easy to be sucked in to these new funky trends and apply them to your current logo projects, but you have to revert back to the ‘relevance’ section during your design process. A modern and trendy logo may be the right route for some cutting-edge companies, however if retro or swirly font aren’t going to represent the business correctly, then think twice before applying it to your design. It will only mean that the logo will quickly become outdated resulting in a complete redesign sooner than you planned.
Choice of typography is extremely important. Each and every font has a tone and emotion. You need to ensure that the font you choose is relative to the tone of the business. To do this, think of some adjectives which communicate the business, and when composing a search for the perfect font simply ask yourself if these attributes are communicated effectively. Display the text in a wide range of fonts before making your final decision so you can compare the overall tone that each font gives.
What do you feel when you see a square? A Circle? A Triangle? What you may not realise is that your thoughts and emotions are effected by the meanings within every shape you see. For example, circles have no beginning or end, they represent eternity, well roundedness and completeness. Squares on the other hand suggest solidity, security and equality. The human brain is wired up to memorize and understand shapes, it’s the way we learn. Therefore a distinctive shape is remembered long after it’s been seen for the first time, so it needs to be carefully considered before moving on to obsessing over colour choices and graphic details.
It is also important to remember to treat each letter-form as it’s own shape when designing a logo. Some of the best known brands have used letter-forms to create their logo and long lasting brand, for example the famous McDonald’s ‘M’, the Chanel logo, Yves Saint Laurent, the list goes on.
8: Be Different
Coming up with something completely unique is getting ever more difficult. With the internet readily available to compose searches for relevant logos it can become overwhelming, and you suddenly find that all the ideas you would have initially thought of are already taken. Our advice is, limit your research online, grab a pencil and some old fashioned paper, and get sketching! It is the most sustainable way of producing something completely unique.
9: Have Personality
Every business has it’s own personality, it’s just not made obvious in some cases. Let the brand tell people what the business is like. There are many logos which are fun, calm, happy, energetic, geeky, smart etc, so it is important to capture the correct personality otherwise it could evoke the wrong emotion altogether.
It is a good idea to consider the brand personality and jot down a few adjectives describing the business before moving on to sketching concept designs.
We often receive logo files from clients which are extremely poor in quality and very low resolution, and it astounds us to find out that these are the best versions of their logo that they have available. It doesn’t give us a lot to work with, and it doesn’t give your business and brand the treatment it truly deserves. It is therefore very important that your logo is created professionally using vector based piece of software. This means that your logo can be scaled as large or as small as you like so you are able to use it for whatever your heart desires.
Design Note: When designing a logo in your choice of software, remember to keep it simple and refrain from applying the numerous number of automatic effects common software packages have available. More often than not they will hinder the overall quality and effectiveness of the logo design.
Add Design are graphic designers in Colchester and create original logo designs and branding ideas for businesses in Essex, Suffolk, London and across the UK. For more information on our logo design service, please contact us.