When it comes to your logo, chances are it’s starting to look a little dated. Maybe your tech-savvy nephew put it together early on in your company’s life and it’s been trucking along ever since. But there is hope! Our team develops world class logos that are custom built for your company and its specific needs. There’s so many things you need to consider when it comes to designing a logo for your company to help it stand the test of time. It needs to resonate with your customers, it needs to be memorable, and it needs to stand out from the sea of competitors your company is surrounded by.
Let’s go over the most important aspects to creating the perfect logo and why your next branding update can hit the ground running with these timeless tips.
Imagine you’ve got a pen and paper in front of you and you’re wanting to create your new logo design. You might start with a design that looks great, similar to the one on the left, below. And honestly, it’s a good looking illustration! It’s unique, catches the eye, and honors your company's past. But it’s failing one of the most important design principles when it comes to logo design; scalability.
Let’s say you put this logo on the top of your business’s front door. It’s big, visible, and serves its purpose well. But let’s imagine this logo is placed as an icon on your smartphone. Suddenly it all clicks. This logo is not passing the scale test. That logo is going to be illegible on that small of a platform and is not going to resonate with any of your customers, it’s just going to look like a black splotch surrounded by clean and modern logos.
The secret to nailing a scalable logo is to keep it simple. Don’t worry about telling an entire story, but rather an idea. The first logo is almost a piece of art, and while it is beautiful, it's not marketable. This is a distinction you should make every time you create a piece of design for commercial purposes. Art rarely scales well, so nailing a simple shape down will be a necessity when adding it in small scenarios.
Here’s some places that you can envision your logo in to get an idea of how big and small your brand identity can be seen from:
2. Monochrome Test
Let’s say you’ve got a thriving construction company that just got accepted into your local business award ceremony (Kudos!) and the award organizers want to add your logo alongside your constituents on their website. This has you excited because you’re a big fan of your logo. The only problem is, they chose to present all those logos in black and white (your logos worst nightmare) and you start to panic. Most small business logos were just never built to actually be presented in any and every colour scheme. Below is an example of a decent logo, but it crumbles when it is presented in any other format.
3. Build for the future
Trends come and go. And that’s why you should stick to the classics. If you look at the most popular logos, they have always become more and more simple overtime. One of the most famous logo transformations was Instagram switching from the complex vintage camera design to a very simple shape. Or Ebay taking the overlap off the logo in favor of a more legible font.
Although you may find the original logos charming, the fact is that they do look dated in relation to their new counterparts. And this phenomenon is easily avoidable by simply designing your logo without design tropes, but rather a style that has always worked throughout design history. The new EBay logo and the new Instagram logos would’ve worked just as well in 2010 or 1990 for example as they do today, and that's the key to a timeless logo.
How’s the competition?
If you’re a tech company, chances are your logo is blue (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn) and if you’re a fast food chain, chances are your logo is red (Mcdonalds, Five Guys, Wendy’s) and this is because everybody wants to fit in. It’s up to you to decide if you’d like to fit into your industry or set a precedent and redefine the local companies around you. If you’re surrounded by companies with very low-effort branding and you nail your identity with amazing visuals, you’re going to stand out as the one company that really looks like they know what they’re doing. In that case, it’s great to stand out and not purposefully create a logo that looks like all the other subpar brands.
If you’re a well established company that's wanting to rebrand, it may be useful to not reinvent the wheel and simplify your logo similar to how the companies above did. There’s a lot of value in brand recognition with your community and making small incremental changes is a sure fire way to ensure your brand is not forgotten or confused over time.
Your logo is the face of your company in many respects and it's important that you nail it down early in the companies timeline to ensure a recognizable brand identity. By using the tips above mixed with a little bit of design chops, you can have a logo that will make you proud. Feel free to reach out to the team at OpenSail for world class design and consultation for your next logo design. Then maybe get the website to match! Check out our other blogs detailing some of our team's thoughts on todays digital world.
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