“A logo does not sell (directly), it identifies.” - Paul Rand
What is the process of designing a logo?
Sometimes when a potential client hears the price of logo design they cannot understand why it costs so much. There is a multi-step strategy for creating good logos, and because we want to be sure that the final design suits the client’s needs, we go through an individualized process to ascertain what those needs are. Here’s a quick description of that process:
1. Design Brief – We begin by asking the client the following questions. This gives us a better idea of what the logo should say about their business or product.
• What is the overall market you are looking to reach (demographics)?
• Who are your main competitors? How do you differ from them?
• How do you want to be perceived by others? (For example: friendly, approachable, technologically advanced, etc.)
• What are some logos that you like -- and why?
• Is there a specific image you have in mind?
• What is the overall look and feel you want for your logo?
• Do you have certain colors that you prefer?
• Where will your logo be used? (This is an important question. Your logo should be able to be used on anything, not just business cards, letterhead and marketing. Think about advertising specialties such as pens, ball caps, etc.).
• If you are redoing your logo, what is the reason for the redesign? What do you like – and dislike -- about your current logo?
• Time frame – When do you plan to start using your new logo?
• How would you describe your services? What are the key words that you often use?
2. Contract – Before starting the research process a signed contract and deposit is due. This way the client understands the terms and agreement prior to any design work.
3. Research – We research competitors and the specific industry to see how other companies are doing business and how they represent their company.
4. Concepts – Based on the information I’ve gathered from the design brief and research, I come up with several different concepts. I start with a lot of thinking – then creating potential images, fonts and graphics, that might work together. I put these thoughts to paper – experimenting with fonts that work well – thinking about the iconic element of the logo… then I try putting the two together to see which font works with which icon.
Sometimes I go back to the drawing board, sometimes I throw my ideas around with another colleague. But I always keep in mind that simplicity is the key. A good logo should work well anywhere, whether it’s on a billboard, a business card, a website. Logos that are simple and clean stand out from the crowd and can work on anything.
5. Presentation – By this stage I have narrowed my designs down to a small group of logos that I believe work best for the client. My goal is to offer the best possible logos that represent the thoughts and ideas of the client’s. I usually offer color choices that I think work well with each particular concept. Once the client has chosen a logo the colors can be tweaked and finalized to their exact specifications.
6. Final– At this end stage, my client has selected a logo and the color(s) have been finalized. The client pays for my design work and receives a final artwork of the logo saved in several different formats for varied usages (web pages, print advertising, letterhead and business cards, etc).
I hope this helps with understanding the logo design process. It is a lot more in depth then one might expect. Since everything in your company’s branding revolves around your logo, it’s got to be great!