If you’re in the process of designing a logo then this guide is for you. Whether you’ve hired a graphic design agency, a freelance designer or you’re designing your own logo, following the simple points in this guide will help you end up with the best result.
Keep it simple, stupid.
This is my number one tip. Think about the best logos in the world.
McDonalds, Apple, and Nike are the big 3 that always come to mind. What do they all have in common?
Everyone knows that McDonalds is a yellow M, Apple is an.. well.. apple and Nike is a tick. An ever present saying amongst designers is “If you can’t draw it in 10 seconds, then it’s no good.”
Remember that the goal of a logo is recognition. The simpler the logo, the easier it will be for both you and your customers to recognise.
So, if you want a timeless logo, keep it simple.
Make it versatile.
While simplicity increases recognition, it also makes the logo a lot more versatile, a quality you need to make sure your logo has.
Think about how and where your logo will be used. A logo should work on a large billboard as well as in a small social media thumbnail. It’s not worth trying to cram a wide logo into a square dimension when it’s not designed that way. It is therefore smart to have a logo that works well in any situation. Another solution would be to have different variations of the same logo for different situations. That’s called a responsive logo.
Future proofing your logo is a great idea too. To do this, make sure you don’t use any “in the moment” typefaces or any super trendy motifs and ideas. In general, just avoid trends all together. Make your logo timeless in it’s approach and you’ll have something that serves you well for years to come.
Oh, and remember to have your logo designed in vector format. This means you can scale it up and down, without compromising quality.
Make it appropriate
Any logo should be appropriate for the business it identifies. Are you a lawyer? Then you shouldn’t have a logo that looks like Toys “R” Us. Is the logo for a winter-holiday TV program? Then beach balls probably won’t cut it. You get the idea.
Most of the times a logo should be relevant to the industry, the business, and the audience to which its catering. Getting up to speed on all these aspects requires a lot of in-depth research, but the investment of time is worth it.
Keep in mind, though, that a logo doesn’t have to go so far as to literally reveal what a company does. Think about the Audi logo, for instance. It isn’t a car. And the McDonalds logo isn’t a hamburger. Yet both are relevant within their respective markets.
Aim for distinction
A distinctive logo is one that can be easily separated from the competition. It has a unique quality or style that accurately portrays your business perspective.
But how do you create a logo that’s unique?
The best strategy is to focus initially on a design that’s recognisable — so recognisable, in fact, that just its shape or outline gives it away. Quite often, one quick glance is all the time you get to make an impression. Make it count.
Working only in black and white can help you create more distinctive logos, since the contrast emphasises the shape or idea. Colour, although important, really is secondary to the shape and form of your design.
Speaking of colours..
Colour can make or break your logo. Colour theory is complex, but with sites like Coolors, things are easier than ever before.
Here are some tips and tricks to keep in mind:
- Use colours that are next to each other on the wheel. For example, if you want to create a cool palette, use blue, turqoise, grey and purple hues.
- Remember that your logo and its colours must look good on both dark and light backgrounds.
- Remember to use colours that are appropriate to your business. Banks use blue to signify trust. Think about what relevance the colour has to your market space
To conclude, keeping the logo as simple as possible, yet meaningful is the way to go for most.
Remember, a logo doesn’t exist in isolation. In the words of Paul Rand,
“A logo derives meaning from the quality of the thing it symbolises, not the other way around.”
Good luck with your logo design project, I hope you found this guide helpful.