A logo can be as simple as stylised initials or as complex as a multifaceted emblem. If you get the right logo designer, your logo could gain iconic status. That’s why it’s so important to hire a professional. Your logo will represent your business for decades to come, and even if you change it, it’s hard to shed the impact of a poorly designed logo.
Get The Right Designer
Start by identifying the right designer. Ask for their portfolio so you can see what other logos they’ve created. The cost of professional design varies, so get a few samples, testimonials, and quotes, then select the best designer available within your budget.
Ideally, you should work with your designer. They are the creative mind that will translate your vision into reality, but it’s up to you to define that vision in a way they can understand. Unless you’re clear on what you’d like your brand image to convey, your logo won’t say or show what you want it to. It shouldn’t just be pretty. It should be functional and effective.
Tell Your Brand Story
Why did you start this business? Obviously, we all want to make money, but there must be a reason you chose to do it in this specific way. Maybe you were attracted to your particular profession as a child, or it might be a family business that you’d like to continue. It may be about expanding your family’s legacy or heritage.
You might have stumbled into your chosen field after trying a hundred other things, or maybe it was a hobby that unexpectedly earned you money. It’s possible you’ve never given this much thought, or perhaps you just don’t know how to express it. Don’t worry. You can tell your designer why you do what you do, and let their creative mind develop a story for you.
For example, maybe you took a job over your school holidays, got a few promotions, and now you’re in a managerial position. A sound designer can craft that into a moving story of youthful curiosity, ambition, work ethic, and success. That’s why you’re paying them.
Choose Colours That Work
What many businesses don’t understand is that logos are not static. They have to be adjusted for a variety of settings. For example, if your logo is printed in a newspaper, it may have to be black-and-white. Or if it appears on a dark background, its appearance will be completely different. It’s a good idea to select colours that work in various settings.
Think about your brand colours. You may have started with your favourite colours, but do they work well together? How would they look in greyscale, and what happens if they are reversed? Stick to two or three brand colours, and use them in reversible positions. For example, think about Christmas colours.
Red and green go well together, but sometimes, they are framed against snow, other times they appear on sparkly metallic tinsel. It might be a green Christmas tree on a red background or red berries on a green holly wreath. Similarly, the Nike logo is sometimes a white tick on a black background, and sometimes it’s a dark tick on a lighter backdrop. You logo colours should work well in both iterations.
Show Your Designer Logos That You Like
As much as you want to avoid clichés, your logo is something that represents your brand, and by extension, represents you. By showing your designer the style that you like, they have a better idea of your taste and can work around it. Don’t ask your designer to make it ‘just like xyz’. Trust their skill. You’ve given them a reference, so let them work their magic.
Now step back and review your designer’s sketches. Trust their process. They will probably give you a few samples in greyscale, full colour, and reversed tone. They will tell you which option they recommend, and may even run a few market tests to help you make your decision. As you look at the sketches, do a few tests of your own.
The people whose opinion you ask are crucial. It’s not as simple as asking your spouse, parent, or child what they think. Run a contextual ‘focus group’ using trusted customers, or people who represent your ideal customer. After all, they’re your target, so you want something that speaks to them as much as it speaks to you.
Think About The Scale
Part of your decision-making process involves execution. Think about how the logo will look on a billboard, or on a branded pen. If it’s too detailed, its beauty won’t be evident on a tiny piece of merchandise. If it’s too dull, it will just be a coloured blob when you put it on a massive digital screen. A good design firm they will help you with this, by showing you exactly how the logo appears in various marketing formats.