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3 Tips On Designing A Great Logo

Gary Green
Jah Brown
March 10, 2020

Having a great logo is absolutely essential for your business. It's often the first thing customers see and the last thing they remember.

There's no excuse these days not to have a great logo. There are plenty of great designers out there who won't break the bank. And, if you fancy having a go yourself, modern design software is very user friendly:

  • Illustrator
  • Photoshop
  • Canva
  • Spark

In today's article, we'll give you our top three tips on logo design.

1. Logos Are "Branding" Not "Design"

Coming up with a great logo is primarily a branding exercise. It's not the time to show off your design skills. And it shouldn't look pretty just for the sake of it.

Your logo is the representation of your business. As such, it's crucial that it strengthens the brand in the following ways:

  • Striking - brand competition is high (particularly in retail and FMCG), so make sure your logo stands out
  • Memorable - when people see your logo again, they should immediately remember who you are and what you do
  • Congruent - your logo should match your company ethos and values (this affects design and colour scheme)

Too often, designers get too cute and too clever when coming up with a logo. The logo isn't there to explain your company, only to represent your company.

The Youtube channel of The Futur branding agency has some great videos on this topic.

2. It Needs To Work In Black And White

Colour is a huge part of a logo. Colour affects mood, it affects brand perception and it can even drive action. In fact, you can have a lot of fun playing around with a colour wheel to see which combinations and palettes work well for your brand.

Having said all that, it's essential that your logo works in black and white. In fact, most good designers will actually work on the logo in black and white first (the "sketching phase"), before even thinking about colour.

Your logo will often need to be used in non-colour environments:

  • Documents
  • Emails
  • Newspapers
  • Stationery

If your logo is too reliant on colour, you will struggle to get brand recognition when it's rendered in black and white. Great logos are instantly recognisable even without their key colours: Apple, Nike, McDonald's...

3. It Needs To Work At All Sizes

Your logo will also find itself being displayed at all sizes. This could be anything from a tiny app icon to a huge out-of-home advert like a billboard or shop sign. As such, it needs to be clear, recognisable and readable at every size.

Most logos are actually fine when blown up to a large size. It's when they are shrunk to fit a website button or a branded pencil that poorly designed logos can struggle.

If your logo is too "busy" it won't be clear at small sizes. This means be careful of too much:

  • Fine detail
  • Thin lines
  • Small text
  • Elaborate design elements

If you already have an elaborate logo, you might be able to create a simpler version for small sizes. But ideally your logo should be consistent across your branding.

If you'd like to discuss any aspect of digital marketing with us, please get in touch.

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