The Secrets Behind Good Logo Design That Nobody Ever Tells You

Brenda Heffron, May 20, 2014

good logo design using top brands like McDonalds and NASA.Maybe we’re being a little melodramatic with the secretive part? Perhaps logo design is fresh in our minds because we’ve sat across the table from clients revealing their brand spanking new logos a lot lately. Across the board, our graphic designers have hit it out of the park as far as clients are concerned. So, what’s their secret to designing a really great logo? We’re talking the “swoosh” and the “apple with a bite mark” goodness here…

The secret is that there isn’t much of a secret, but more about common sense. Sounds easy enough, but it is far more difficult than it appears. After all, there is a lot of pressure put on your logo. You want your logo to be cool and stand out, and that is where logo design goes down hill quickly… Yes, your logo should be cool, but in a James Dean/John Wayne quiet-strength cool kind of way. Not a Miley Cyrus/Justin Beiber hey-look-at-me logo spectacle.

Why are strong logos important for businesses?

Well, come to find out, your parents were right. It’s important to make a good first impression and chances are that your business logo is one of the first impressions you’ll make on consumers.

That being the case, you definitely don’t want your logo to suffer from multiple personality disorder. A good, strong logo is simple, ageless, fitting and quickly readable/understandable. It represents your company without trying too hard or over complicating what you do or sell. Cluttered logos that try to explain all aspects of your business will be forgotten because the consumer is unable to pick out one element to remember. Cluttered logos are like pinball machines for the eye. Also, your logo should not resemble a competitor’s in any way, shape or form. You are your own company. Be proud of it rather than attempt to gain popularity by association.

What are the elements of a good logo?

Good logos know when to follow the path of least resistance and when to journey off that trek. Just because you’re selling dentistry, don’t feel like you’re stuck with a tooth image. Sound outrageous? It works for these companies:

Two different logo's are designed in similar fashions

Good logos not only work in the now, they work in the future and in every scenario possibly imaginable. If the colors are too trendy, you could end up with the equivalent of an avocado green fridge in the age of stainless steel. If the imagery is not timeless, you could be sporting a Walkman amongst iPhones. And if the logo isn’t appropriate, you’ll be misleading consumers and that’s never, ever a good idea any time.

Good logos are a versatile graphic design element. As well they should be considering all the places and spaces they can potentially occupy. Once destined for letterhead, envelopes, packaging, building signs, business cards and the like, today’s logos go everywhere from the Web to print. Logos have to be evaluated in color and black and white because you never know what ad you’ll place down the road. They need to be judged on whether or not they’ll work for social media profile photos, as well as promotional swag. Bottom line: logos have to look great everywhere, not just on paper.

Lastly, a word on consistency. Google changes its logo on occasion to commemorate holidays, events and whatever pleases the Google powers that be that day. Small businesses are not Google. Be consistent with your logo usage or confusion will result. One day, you’re green. The next, you’re black. One ad has a triangle; the next ad has a circle. Customers will wonder who you are because they certainly don’t recognize you from last time.

According to Webster Dictionary, a logo is an identifying statement. If your logo is sloppy, hard to read and understand or just plain ugly, customers will associate those qualities with your company. And while it’s not necessarily right or fair, your company is judged by the logo you keep. So be professional, be succinct, be sincere and your logo can’t go wrong.

Are you rethinking your current logo now? Just starting a small business and want to make a good first impression online? We’ve got a whole arsenal of logo design best practices and secrets up our sleeves. And we’re willing to share… just drop us a line and start a conversation!

 

Tell Us What You Think