They say you only get one chance to make a first impression, and part of that is your logo. Whether you’re a new brand designing your logo for the first time or an established brand trying to take your logo in a new direction, getting the right logo as the symbol of your brand is paramount. Your logo can affect how customers perceive your brand and ultimately whether or not they choose to buy. Here are five things to consider when designing a new logo.
The colors you choose in your logo may have a very personal meaning to you, but did you know that certain colors can elicit specific emotional responses? It’s common that small business owners or entrepreneurs already have their colors picked out for a new logo. Sometimes it is because there’s an emotional backstory behind them, other times just because it’s what they could agree on. As callous as it may sound, it’s important to remember when deciding on colors for your new logo that your attachment to the colors isn’t nearly as important as how the customer feels. Rarely, if ever, will you have the opportunity to explain the color scheme depth to a potential customer before they’ve made up their mind.
This is especially important if you want your logo to be some sort of wordmark – a text-only logo, usually the name of the business, like FedEx or Coca-Cola. However, if there’s going to be any sort of writing on the logo, the font you choose is important. There’s more to a logo’s typography than just slapping Times New Roman on it to look professional. Like colors, the font in your logo can say so much about your brand. If you try to get too modern to appeal to a younger crowd, you risk looking unprofessional. Conversely, a font that’s too bland and plays it too safe could make the brand look stiff. A good designer will be on top of the latest font trends and can help you pick out what suits your brand and your target market.
The detail of your logo is not dependent so much on your target market or your desired effect as much as it is on where and how your logo will be presented. If you’re primarily planning on using this on a website – especially one that will be optimized for mobile – or social media, you’re going to want something that can be clearly seen when it’s small. Like colors, certain details can carry a lot of meaning for an entrepreneur, but if those details cause a thumbnail-sized version of your logo to blur together, it will completely backfire.
If you’re like most businesses, you’re going to want to use your logo in a variety of places, and the shape of your logo will be a big part of that. Social media profile pictures are always going to be square, as are favicons (the icon you see on your website’s tab). However, you may want a horizontal logo to go on top of your website, or to be a part of packaging or promotional materials. With the various channels of communication out there, it’s imperative that you work with a designer who can come up with logo variations with different dimensions that still give off the look and feel that your brand is going for.
Many brands choose to put hidden images in their logos (Like FedEx, Tour de France, Tostitos or Baskin Robbins), and it’s definitely something fun that can be added to your logo. The trick is working with a designer that can make the imagery work without distorting the primary intent of the logo. You don’t want the secondary meaning of the logo to make it so customers can’t understand what your brand is about.
Even using these guidelines, there are many ways for your brand’s logo to stand out. It’s important to consider who your market is (or who you want it to be) as well as what you want your logo to say about your brand when choosing a logo. Putting thought into each little detail of your logo can go a long way towards building a better brand.