A logo is your organization’s identity – your image – your representation. A professionally designed logo is important because it’s the first impression a client gets. What does your logo say about your company?
Clients seldom present logos for use with their websites. The logo is often too complex, ugly and makes no sense; but they don’t know that. I try my best to accept what they have, and sometimes, make small touch-ups, if at all possible.
If you scroll up to the top of this page, you’ll see some professionally designed, well-known, logos. Here’s what they all have in common:
- Easy Shapes
These logos use shapes that are recognizable and easy to understand: text, circles, apples, blocks, pandas, eagles, price tags, arrows, ovals. When we look at these shapes, we easily understand and remember them.
- Bold Text
Notice the bold letters, they grab your attention and they stand out. Even though the IBM logo has lines going through it, it still is bold, strong and understandable.
- Relates to the Industry
Some of the logos are identified with the industry, product, or service and gives a clear picture of what is being marketed. With NBC, we are shown a multicolored peacock to show enhancements in color broadcasting. With FedEx, there’s an arrow between the E and X signifying motion and fast transport. The U.S. Postal service used an eagle for the U.S. and thick bold streaks to show the motion of mail delivery. The World Wildlife Fund uses a panda. Apple used an apple.
All the logos are simple shapes and colors. They don’t use gradients, drop shadows and bevels, just clean and simple lines. The reason for this is because: the more lines you add the more complicated for the viewer to understand; and simple logos can be scaled down to very tiny sizes yet still be readable.
- Minimal Color
Most of the logos use no more than 2 colors, most only one. There are two reasons for this: 1) the more colors you add the more complicated the logo can get and 2) it costs more money to print additional colors. However, with digital printers today, the amount of colors is not a problem.
Basic shapes and minimal colors make the logo easy to translate to other media like signage or coffee mugs. But, say for instance, the logo needs to be presented on a black background without color at all, will the logo still work? See how these logos still function even though they’ve been altered for black and white:
Each logo is still recognizable even though they’re one color. Once you have a solid logo like the above, you can play with it and add effects like Apple and other companies do:
As you can see above, these logos (better described as graphical icons) use bevels, gradients and drop shadows, but we know they didn’t start out this way. I advise you to never accept (even though it looks cool) a logo from a designer that looks like the above. When it comes time to change the media to display the logo on, it will be very difficult to make the logo work. This is why professional logos are so simple, they must function across multiple media.
Finding a Great Logo Designer
Do a Google search and don’t expect to pay cheap prices for a great logo. A great logo is art and it takes time and skill to design something that is unique and fits your company. I’ve seen logos cost range from 299 to 1500 bucks. I would say a reasonable investment for a logo starts at 400 bucks and this cost doesn’t include matching stationery or other additional services the designer may include.
To determine if the logo designer is capable of designing a professional logo, simply look at their portfolio. Does the logos look like professional ones based off of what you’ve learned in this article?
Currently, Ikreator does not provide logo design services. It is best that you use a company who specializes in logo design. Even though web design companies may offer logo design as an additional service, you should make sure they know what a professional logo looks like.
Concepts and Revisions
Another thing to know is that the cost for logo design goes up based on the number of concepts and revisions. Concepts are the amount of unique logos the designer will create. Revisions are the amount of times the designer will revise any given concept. Terms like these are explained in more detail on their individual websites.
What You’ll Receive
You should receive your finalized logo in vector file format. Vector files are graphical files that can resized, either big or small, and still retain their crisp edges and quality. You will probably receive an
(Adobe Illustrator), and/or
file. Both file types are vector and will do well when it comes time to have the logo printed on other types of media.
You may also receive
file copies; these are helpful because they are viewable without the use of graphic software, vector files usually are not; these file formats also are used on the web so its helpful to have these for your web developer. Your finalized logo should contain the original color logo, an all-white and an all-black version (for multi-media purposes discussed above).
You can also try designing your logo yourself using www.LogoYes.com – this is an online DIY (do it yourself) service which allows you to pick from over 20,000 symbols, choose colors, fonts, and arrange the logo and text the way you like. It’s definitely worth a try – and they actually meet logo standards. Cost is just $69. Better yet, we’ll assist you in creating the best logo for your company.
That’s all I have to say about this topic. Just follow the visual rules of the professional logos and you should be OK. Don’t allow bevels, drop shadows, gradients and things that will complicate the logo, make sure it’s simple, easily understood (especially at small sizes) and can be displayed in any color and on any background color.