Tuesday, September 17, 2013
Designing a logo can be an incredibly important part of your business, in the case of service-based industries such as health professions, the importance of your logo is less prominent and noticeable, but still can have an effect on the success or failure of your business. Therefore, making sure that your logo is of a high quality, memorable and unique is crucially important. So how can you go about ensuring that your business’ logo will end up drawing in customers and not scaring them away? Read on to find out:
1. Don’t Get Too Over the Top
One of the most rookie of mistakes you can make when designing a logo is choosing to use a logo that simply has “too much going on.” It is critically important for your logo, to follow the golden rule of “less is more.” Whether your logo has too many different colors, a large variety of graphical flourishes, or simply is too confusing, you need to send your graphic designer back to the drawing board to give you something else to work with. A logo that is too over-the-top can distract potential customers from the matter at hand, which is actually making a purchase and profiting your business. Likewise, graphically intense logos simply don’t appeal in the same way a very simple, yet refined logo can and often can turn customers off from your product or service. Often times, the simplest logo can be the best one — think Nike’s “Swoosh” for example. Emblematic proof that you don’t need a fancy logo to be at the top of the business world.
2. Your Logo Should Work Without Color
One of the important aspects of logo design is ensuring that your logo can function properly with or without the usage of color — in other words, don’t rely heavily on color to make or break your logo. Why is this? Well, depending on the context of your logo it may or may not be able to have color. If you’re feeling old-timey and choose to publish an ad in the paper, this may require you to publish your logo in grayscale. Color ink can also be costly, and you may want to place your logo as a watermark on important documents circulated throughout the company or forms for customers to fill out. Therefore, it is critically important that your logo can function both in a colorful and grayscale context depending on the circumstances.
3. Make it Scalable & Versatile
When designing a logo, do your absolute best to certify that this logo can work in a variety of sizes. You may want to use your logo on something as small as a business card or as a watermark on company memos, or on something as large as a billboard. Regardless of where your logo appears, it should work in a variety of sizes and contexts. A logo that doesn’t work in small sizes can be unreadable and unrecognizable and might just be viewed as a blotch of illegible text, and a logo that doesn’t work in large sizes might look bloated, ballooned and clunky. Because of the nature of a brand’s logo, you want it to look great, no matter what the medium or context.
4. Make it Memorable
At its core, a logo is essentially a visual representation of your business, and for many potential consumers, it will be the introduction to your company. In our rapid-paced, capitalistic society, we see tons of logos on a daily basis, but the vast majority fail to be memorable enough for us to remember. If you want someone to remember your logo — and thus, your company — you need a logo that is memorable. Returning to our old favorite: Nike’s “Swoosh,” is one of the most recognizable logos in the world, with people from Texas to Tanzania thinking “Nike” when they see the company’s logo. It’s hard to tell someone “how” to make a memorable logo, because often times a memorable logo is something that happens by luck. However, you shouldn’t settle for something that won’t stick out with consumers. Likewise, don’t fall into the trap of simply imitating someone else’s logo. This won’t earn you any customers; in fact, most people simply will associate your logo with whatever you’re imitating, perhaps even making your logo less memorable.
5. It’s Not About What You Say, But How You Say It: Font Usage
When it comes to using text, font usage is incredibly important. In the absence of an actual voice or tone to express your company’s message with, font subs in as the means by which you express the tone of your company in a brand. For this reason, ensuring you’re using the “right” font for your brand’s logo is essential to quality logo design. Though most people know to avoid this, you can easily see why using “Comic Sans” or “Papyrus” can seem childish and unprofessional for many “professional” business logos. After all, you probably wouldn’t choose to do business with a law firm that used either of those fonts in their logo design. Additionally, don’t use more than two fonts in your logo design. As we mentioned in #1, doing “too much” can begin to distract, confuse and even alienate potential customers and one of the prime offenders is too many different fonts. Finally, if you’re budget allows, you might consider having a custom font for your logo. If the font is memorable enough, it will become part of a brand in itself.
Zane Schwarzlose is an SEO at Fahrenheit Marketing, LLC in Austin, Texas. At Fahrenheit, he's seems countless company logos developed.