Branding – Creating the perfect logo

Apple and Coke are two of the most recognised logos in the world

Over for the last couple of weeks, I have spoken about how branding is NOT just about your logo (if you haven’t seen those posts they are here and here).

Now that you have had time to get your head around that concept, we can finally talk about creating the perfect logo for your business. When creating a logo brief for a graphic designer, always start with these four key elements in mind.

A great logo should be:

1. Memorable

Memorable logos tend to be simple. You want people to be able to snapshot your logo in their mind so that they can easily recognise it at a later date. Recognition is a vital part of the branding process.

2. Must look good both in colour and in black and white

Lots of people like a lot of detail in their logo. They also like funky gradients, drop shadows and other “cool” stuff. “Cool” stuff has its place, but not in a logo. Any element that impacts on the ability of your logo to look equally as good in black and white as it does in colour should be discarded.

3. Must look good BIG and small

Your logo needs to be “scalable”. It needs to look great on a billboard and it needs to look great on letterhead. When it’s made really tiny and printed on promotional material (say a pen), it STILL needs to look good. Which brings us back to simplicity – if your logo isn’t simple, it’s not going to scale well.

4. Must have some relevance to your industry

You don’t want to confuse people so you please don’t have an icon in your logo that has no relevance to what you are all about. This doesn’t mean you have to be super obvious about it. For instance, if you are a painter, you don’t HAVE to put a paint tin in your logo design, but any iconography should either be suggestive of painting or relevant to your name. For example, if your company name is Elephant Painting, then sure, it is relevant to have an elephant icon in your logo. But if your company name is Perfect Painting … then having an elephant in there is going to be very confusing for potential clients!

Remember, your logo is going to go on EVERY promotional item that is related to your business from stationery and signage to t-shirts and website. Ensuring you create a logo that looks good across all these applications is one of the first steps in being consistent, and as we have already mentioned before, consistency is the key to great branding.

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