A logo is an integral component of a brand’s identity and has a significant impact on the way in which a consumer will perceive a business. So, with this in mind, you clearly want your logo to stand out and make the best possible impression on your audience. But what does the process of designing an effective logo actually look like?
This is a question we get asked frequently, which is why we have put together this guide, running through some of the most important aspects of designing a memorable logo for your business.
Why you Need a Great Logo
Marketplaces are extremely competitive places so you need to provide your potential customers with a reason to pay attention to you over one of your competitors.
Think of your logo as being a little like the profile picture you would choose to use on a dating profile. It is ultimately what is going to prompt people to take an interest in your brand. It has to sum you up from a single idea of concept. Ideally, your target audience would see it and want to learn more about you.
First impressions are extremely important and this is precisely why investing time, care and attention into creating the perfect logo for your business is imperative. Additionally, your logo will be present throughout your branding including on your website, social media platforms, business cards and product packaging. So, let’s take a closer look at how to create a logo that will do everything you need it to do and more.
Defining your Brand
Your logo needs to communicate your brand’s ethos, values and personality. In order to do this successfully, you need to understand what makes your business unique because this information will inform every design choice you make moving forwards.
You might find it helpful to ask yourself the following questions:
- What makes my business unique?
- What can my business offer that no one else can?
- If I could describe my business in three words, what would they be?
- How do I want my customers to describe my business?
The answers to these questions should help you start to formulate a template of understanding. It’s amazing how many people will end up being challenged by some of these questions. Ultimately if you’re struggling to define what your business is about then you’re going to struggle to define it to other people.
This phase of the design process is arguably the most difficult because there are simply so many avenues that you could choose to pursue. Collecting inspiration will help you to put together a mood board of potential ideas and effectively determine which design avenue will best facilitate the creation of a powerful logo for your brand.
You might choose to begin by putting together a mind map of broad ideas. Remember, even objectively bad ideas can be the spark that leads to a concept that will evolve into your ideal logo, so encouraging everyone to share what they’re thinking is essential. You might also find it valuable to think like your audience. Put yourself in the shoes of someone in your target demographic and take the time to consider what is important to them.
There is never any harm in looking at the design decisions your competitors have chosen to make. This will help you to determine what appeals to your ideal audience as well as providing valuable indicators as to things you should probably avoid.
During this process, however, it is critical that you don’t fall into the trap of imitating your competition. Standing out must remain a primary objective and there are myriad ways in which you could achieve this. If, for example, most of your competitor brands have chosen a very traditional logo, introducing some modernity into yours could be an excellent way to capture some attention.
Defining your Style
Once you understand your brand identity and have put together a series of inspirational mood boards, now is the time to start getting creative. Translating your ideas into visual designs involves a variety of creative processes and the integration of different elements that need to work in harmony together. Taking the time here to define your style will help you to create elements that bring something distinctive to your logo but will also come together to create one cohesive design.
Adopting a classic design style could give your logo the longevity you need and communicate that your business is down to earth, reliable and trustworthy. Alternatively, if you want to tap into some trendy nostalgia, adopting a vintage or retro-inspired design style can help you to tell your audience that a sense of heritage is important to your brand.
Brands with a modern and fresh identity often select a minimalist design style, with plenty of simple lines and few details. Sleek logos often look cool and up-to-date, so if this reflects your brand personality, don’t be afraid to pursue the design of a paired-back logo. Understated certainly doesn’t need to mean dull. Conversely, if your brand has a big personality that you want to showcase, adopting a quirky or fun design style will give you the freedom to express your character in myriad ways.
Remember, there are no rules to say that you need to select a single design style. If several fit the vibe of your brand, mix and match them until you find a combination that perfectly represents your personality.
The Importance of Colour
Colour theory is based on the psychological concept that different colours evoke different ideas, feelings and emotions (the degree to which these are as a result of cultural influence or genetics is a matter of contention).
Red, for example, evokes feelings of passion, excitement and anger, making it an ideal choice for brands who want to make a big impression. Orange can evoke similar feelings of energy and vibrancy but in a more playful way. Purple tones often exude luxury and mystery, making them a great choice for brands looking to position themselves as a lavish option for discerning customers. Blue hues are notably cool and calming, which send a message of maturity and trustworthiness to consumers.
Although you can choose to select a monochromatic colour palette, combining several colours can help you to communicate a complete colour story. It is important to select colours that work well together and there are several ways you can choose to do this:
- Complimentary colours sit opposite each other on the colour wheel. They create a dynamic look and allow the best qualities of each colour to shine.
- Analogous colours sit close to each other on the colour wheel and create a harmonious aesthetic that is pleasing on the eye.
- Triadic colours schemes are comprised of three colours which are evenly spaced across the colour wheel, which gives a bold and stimulating look. The most widely recognisable triadic combination is red, yellow and blue.
If you want to incorporate text into your logo, selecting the right font is imperative. Serif fonts will give a classic aesthetic and work especially well with vintage-inspired designs. Conversely, sans serif fonts have a clean and modern look, making them a preferred option for many contemporary brands with a minimalistic logo.
Not only do you need to attract your ideal audience, but you also need them to quickly fall in love with your business or at least want to learn more about you. A great logo can help you to do this and working with the right design team will help you to create a logo that will stand the test of time, set you apart from your competitors and appeal to your audience.