Sure, logo design is best left to the experts. However you still need to establish a framework to encourage production of a great logo. This ensures that your logo will work across your entire small business, rather than just by itself on a screen. Follow these six steps and ensure you’re in the driving seat.
Only Ask for Three Logo Concepts at a Time
A great logo designer will produce dozens of logo concepts as they sketch away. However in coming back to you, your logo designer only needs to showcase their top three. You don’t need dozens of concepts top distract you. You just need to focus on a select few to be able to gauge what is working and what isn’t. Sure, if none of the presented concepts work, you can ask for more, but take a moment to really breathe the initial concepts. Does anything stand out to you as a rough diamond that could be polished into something great?
When you think your logo designer’s stumbled upon something great, it’s tinker time
Always Work With A Black Logo Design First
During the initial logo development stages, it’s important to remain focused on the structure of your logo. Ask your designer to provide design proofs in one colour only (preferably black). This will ensure that you do not become distracted by colour, but instead stay focused on the design. Colour is only added once the underlying foundation of your logo is strong.
If your small business logo does not work in one colour, it is not a good logo design.
Avoid Intricate Logo Designs
Do not choose a logo design that is too intricate. Your logo needs to be legible, recognisable and scalable across small and large mediums. You are not entering a fancy cake competition.
Be aware that you are critiquing your logo by looking at it again and again for long durations. Your customers do not offer you this luxury. They are either skimming your logo while talking on the phone, trying to find a parking spot or shielding their kids from the nearby road. Your logo needs to have impact and be simple.
Your logo MUST be legible. Do not use a flowing cursive font at the expense of legibility. If your logo cannot be read, it is next to useless.
Setting Your Logo Dimensions
Pay attention to the dimensions of your logo. Do you want a predominantly portrait (tall) logo, a landscape (wide) logo or a square dimensioned logo? Be mindful wider or squarer logos are usually a lot easier to apply to websites, business cards, products and brochures. The taller or wider a logo is, the more difficult it will be to work with.
Alternatively you can produce two logo versions – a portrait version and a landscape version. Just ensure you have clear guidelines around when one should be used over the other. Consistency is the key.
Assess Whether Your Logo ‘Works’
You’ve been unnaturally staring at your logo for days now. As you try to fend off tunnel vision, it’s time to see if your logo still cuts the mustard. It’s time to test your logo on a variety of your applications. This includes websites, brochures, business cards and any other pieces that spring to mind. To test, either physically cut and paste your new logo onto existing materials or ‘print screen’ your new logo onto your website.
Does it sit well? Does it complement and emphasise your other branding?
If you are unsure, it may be a good idea to forward examples of your applications to your designer so they can work within your required application scope.
What is the Best Colour For Your Logo?
Hurray, now it’s time to move to technicolour. Your logo designer should recommend at least two or three colour schemes. When assessing these schemes, be mindful of:
- The personality of your small business
- What each colour represents in your industry
- The colours that your competitors use. Don’t copy
- What each colour represents emotionally
For an overview of how colour influences emotion, check out the site Color Wheel Pro
Bear in mind that you can vary the intensity and shade of your colours to either soften impact or increase dramatic effect. Once colours are agreed, ask your designer to document the CMYK, RGB, HECS and PMS colour breakdowns of every colour in your logo. These are the unique codes that represent your colours across various print and online applications. Don’t worry if you don’t know what these acronyms mean, just keep the codes in a safe place for now, as you will need to reference these colours when you’re producing materials for your small business.
Did you come unstuck on any of these areas when you designed your logo?
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