Making an effective and unique logo is not an easy task. It requires a lot of knowledge and research. You need to have a solid understanding of how you can make a design that is effective and depicts your business picture in the best way possible. This is the most comprehensive guide on how to design a logo for your business. So let’s get started.
What is a logo?
Simply put, a logo is a symbol that a company uses for its identification. It is the face of your brand or business. People recognize and remember your business by its logo. For example, Apple can be easily identified by its apple logo. The same is the case with Amazon. People recognize it with the smiley arrows that indicate that you can buy everything from A to Z on Amazon.
So, we can say that logos play a very important role in the branding of a business, making it recognizable in the market. However, you must keep this in mind that a logo is neither a complete brand nor a complete visual identity of a business. It is just one of the many essential components required for the branding of your business in the market.
What makes a good logo?
A good logo is the one that is unique, simple, practical, and appropriate. It must be effective in conveying the exact picture you want to show to the customers. It also has to be versatile, timeless, and not too complex so that people can easily remember and relate to it. It can be printed in any size and must look good even without any color. Hence, it can be said that you can make a good logo with a unique concept and right execution.
How to design a logo?
Before getting started, here are two things that you need to know:
- Designing a logo is not just about creating something visual. Rather, it requires a lot of thinking, analyzing, and decision-making before you come up with a good logo.
- A logo of a business company is a part of the large visual system, so you have to make sure that all the elements of this system work well together in the branding of the business.
Here is a step-by-step guide on how you can design a good, effective, and unique logo for your business.
First of all, you have to conduct thorough research on the industry and the successful competitors in the market. Follow the history of trends and styles and observe what works well in the specific market. Shortlist the logos that attracted you and note down the points that you like about each one of them.
Build your brand
Next comes the branding. You have to create a brand story. Write down your values and mission statement, and choose as many adjectives to define your brand as you can. Mark the ones that you feel are most important.
Next, you have to figure out your target audience. Find out whom do you want to target for marketing your products. You can figure out the audience according to the gender, age groups, education, likes and dislikes, and so on.
Determine the logo type and features
A good logo is the one that suits well with the business name and is aesthetically good looking. There are different styles and features that can be added in a logo, and you can mix and match any of them to create a unique outlook.
Generally, logos are of 7 different types:
- Wordmark logo
- Monogram logo
- Brandmark logo
- Combination logo
- Abstract mark logo
- Mascot logo
Wordmark logo (or logotype)
Wordmarks use the company’s name as the logo. Therefore, the most important decision in making a successful wordmark logo is choosing the right typography. Strong typography equals strong brand recognition. Companies with wordmark logos include Coca Cola, Vans, Google, Fedex and Disney.
Monogram logos are combining 1 to 3 letters to create a symbol. These letters often are the initials of a person or business. If your company name is too long, difficult, or hard to remember, this can be a great choice for you. Examples include Gucci, Chanel, HP, NASA and H&M.
These are also known as the pictorial marks. They represent a logo in the form of graphical design. These designs are easily recognizable and create a good connection with the audience. A good example is the symbol of a tooth for the dentistry clinic. Other brandmark logos include Apple, Target, Shell and Twitter. The most difficult part of a brandmark logo is choosing that one image to represent your entire company.
As the name indicates, it combines both the wordmark and the symbol. You can mix and match to choose the right layout that has both the context and the picture embedded in the right way. Also, you can use each element separately as well whenever needed for handouts, prints, advertising, etc,. Combination logos include Burger King, Adidas, Doritos and Mastercard.
Abstract mark logo
If you are looking for something unique, abstract mark logos are a good option. They are the geometric logos that are distinctive from the rest. Meaning businesses choose an abstract mark logo to separate themselves from their competition. In addition to, the use of color, shape and form can create an emotional response.
With that in mind, understand that if you are a new business your abstract mark logo won’t be recognizable at the beginning. Accordingly, you have to use the company name alongside the logo so that it’s easier for the audience to recognize it. Then once your brand becomes recognizable, you can use it solely as well. Abstract mark logo examples include Chase, Pepsi, Nike and Playstation.
If you’re looking for a fun way to identify your brand, you can go for the mascot logos. They are often colorful, cartoonish images that represent the business in a friendly way. Also, they are much more flexible than a standard logo. However, if your business is professional and serious, choosing a mascot logo might not be a good option. Examples of companies with mascot logos include Pringles, KFC, Cheetos and Wendy’s.
Just like the combination logos, the emblems are a combination of texts and images. Usually, they consist of a text inside a symbol or icon to give a very classic, traditional appearance. That is why a lot of car brands use emblem logos to ensure customers that they are strong, trustworthy, established, safe and secure. Or NFL uses an emblem logo to indicate that football is a part of American history and heritage. These logos also tend to be more detailed. For this reason, they are not as versatile compared to the other logo types. Emblem logos include Warner Brother, Starbucks, BMW, Volvo, Ford, Harley Davidson and NFL.
Once you have chosen the logo design, next you have to focus on the typography. There are numerous font types, and you have to choose the right one according to your logo design. You can choose any amongst the serifs, script, modern, decorative and sans serif fonts.
Serif typefaces (Times New Romans, Georgia & Garamond) have decorative at the end of horizontal and vertical strokes on the letters. This typeface communicates refinement, authority, sophistication, confidence, elegance, tradition, classic, established and trustworthy. Common companies that use serif fonts are financial companies, academics, and editorials.
Slab serif typefaces (Courier, Rockwell & Museo) are different from the traditional serif typefaces by being associated with boldness, confidence, dependability. Companies that choose slab serif are used by car or technology brands to communicate to customers that they are reliable while still modern.
Sans Serif typefaces (Arial, Century Gothic & Helvetica) on the other hand have NO decorative features at the end of strokes and have less stroke width variation than serif typefaces. As a result, sans serif fonts are seen as more modern, stable, simplicity, approachable, casual, friendly, informal and clean. Brands that use sans serif fonts are forward thinking brands such as clothing and technology.
Script Typefaces (Lucida Script, Lobster & Zapfino) look handwritten so they seem more personable and can generate the ideas of femininity, elegance, creativity, casualness and playfulness. Make sure you choose a script typeface that is legible.
Modern Typefaces (Matchbook, Politica & Klavika) are easy to read, simple with a fun modern flair. These fonts communicate exclusivity, intelligence and style. This typeface is perfect if your target audience is millennials.
Display and Decorative Typefaces (Bombing, Gigi & Jokerman) are highly unique, stylized and customized fonts that can separate you from all competitors. This type of font feels more casual, direct and fun.
A logo layout is another important consideration when designing a logo. Here you ask yourself: “Where will I use this logo?” You have to consider both the primary and the secondary uses of the logo. Try it out on various backgrounds to make sure that it suits well on every medium. Also, analyze where your business logo will stand in the next 10 to 15 years. Try out different colors and styles to see if you could incorporate them in the later stages.
Design the Logo
There are two options when it comes to designing a logo. Either you do it yourself or you hire a professional to do it. In either case, the general three steps (research, brand, logo features) stay the same.
If you plan to do it yourself, take a paper and pen and start sketching what you have got in your mind. Then you can create a logo on the vector graphic design software.
However, if you hire a professional to design it for you, you have to deliver a clear understanding of the first three steps. The more clear information you will deliver regarding your considerations, the better results and less likely of back and forth between you and the designer which in turn saves you time.
SunCity Advising Digital Marketing Services
Designing a logo is definitely a time-taking task. It requires a lot of effort and creativity to make a unique and effective logo. You have to conduct market research to get to know about the market competition, then you have to build your brand with a unique mission statement, and only then can you work on the logo features to design a versatile, appropriate and unique logo for your company.
If you decide to look for some expert help, consider working with SunCity Advising for digital marketing services. Good luck!