A logo is a major investment in a brand’s identity and offers the foundation for a brand to build on. A successful logo is also simple, functional, memorable and versatile, yet so many businesses get it wrong. We look at some of the main reasons why…

What you see is what you get – To depict exactly what your business does in the literal sense may seem like the obvious answer when it comes to logo design, but a logo is meant to be the main ‘identifier’ of your brand – it’s not meant to actually tell people what you do, offer or sell. Some of the world’s most iconic logos (think Nike) don’t shout out what they do, but rather who they are.

Steer clear of the obvious in favour of the unique and memorable.

A failure of fonts – A font can convey many things, including tone and feeling. The most effective fonts are simple, strong and legible. Selecting a bad font for a logo design will inevitably make it look unprofessional and amateur. The best approach is to use no more than two in a logo design, as using too many font types will only serve to confuse people and dilute a logo’s punch. Another important aspect to consider is matching a font to a brand’s icon. If the font choice does not reflect the nature of the icon, then the whole message can become confusing.

A good font matches the personality of a business and is compatible with a brand’s core values.

A poor palette – Right up there with bad fonts are bad colours and bad colour effects. Colours are the visual assistants that help to convey a certain type of emotion. But again, if the colour selection is random, goes overboard in terms of the numbers of colours chosen or tries to get clever with gradients and does not reflect the true nature of the logo’s icon, then the core message of the brand will get lost. Also, a successful logo design needs to look great stripped down to its black and white basics, so it can be used in other ways – from branded signage to custom embroidery.

A ‘technicolour’ logo doesn’t make for a versatile or professional image.

Using pictures – Firstly, pictures are made up of pixels, which immediately makes it tricky to scale a logo to various sizes while still maintaining a clear, quality image. Secondly, clip art, stock imagery and vectors and are a dime a dozen, which means anyone can use them for just about anything and this can lead to more than one brand with the same (or similar) logo. Lastly, they’re not always free to download, which can lead to copyright infringements and other legal issues later on.

A logo should be unique and original – using clip art or a stock image offers neither. They are unimaginative and easy to spot.

Size really does matter – A successful logo design works in any size, so along with cementing the right fonts and colours, always consider scalability (how big or small it can go and still be clear). Will it work on a T-shirt, a billboard, in a browser tab, on a business card, as a thumbnail or social media profile image, on multiple devices and applications? Also ‘busy’ logos with lots of detail tend to lose that detail when they are used small.

The more detailed, the more that gets lost when it comes to downsizing a logo. A simpler icon can easily be replicated across multiple platforms.

You get what you pay for – This old adage has never been truer than in the logo-creation department. Designing a logo can take time and several attempts. The benefits of getting it right far outweigh any headaches later from a budget or DIY design, an online find, or something a cousin who dabbles a little in graphic design can produce.

As with all things, hiring a professional is always a good idea – especially for such a valuable investment.

Bearing all this in mind, the best logos out there are effective, mainly because of their simplicity. They don’t need every bell and whistle. The more minimal and uncomplicated, the more powerful – every time.

If you would like to know more about our logo design capabilities and how we can assist you in building a solid face for your brand, give us a call or drop us a message by clicking the link below:

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