Ever seen a big brand without a logo representing it? Neither have I. And for the very simple reason that there are no brands, big or small, that do not have a unique symbol identifying them. A logo does far more than just add style a little style and imagery to your brand. It affects the way customers perceive your brand.
And it is that perception that affects how customers, existing and potential, interact with your brand. So, the most ideal way to ensure that your consumers interact with your brand the way you want, your logo should be amazing.
But how can you ensure that your brand’s symbol is truly outstanding? How can you portray the right message through your logo design?
Let’s take a look at the six essential factors you need to ensure that your logo design is a hit with your consumers, and portrays your brand message perfectly.
The logo design process is very intuitive, but only when you start with a clear picture in mind. You need a clear vision of what you want to create, the knowledge of how to bring your idea to life, and experience creating such graphics.
Essentially, before you embark on a logo creation journey, you need to know the basic graphic design tenets and tips, at the very least. Next, you will need to identify your customer base. That will in turn help you decide the message you want to portray to your consumers.
The principles listed below are some of the most fundamental aspects of a great logo. Let’s take a look at what you can use to make your logo amazing.
Simplicity is a defining characteristic of logos that have proved their worth for years. Their design makes them easy to publish onto a variety of mediums, and their basic features make it likelier that a viewer will remember it.
When you design a logo today, every feature of your symbol should be clear and distinct. Moreover, the less complex your design, the better your logo will be at portraying your brand message to your consumers.
Take, for, example, the FedEx logo.
Visually, the logo is a simple wordmark written in a blocky font. However, the font is designed in such a way that the negative space between the last two letters forms the shape of an arrow pointing towards the right. This portrays both the company’s drive for achieving new heights in transportation and logistics, as well as the purpose of their business – I-e transporting goods from one place to another.
There are a lot of elements to consider when creating a simple logo design. The designer needs to balance the demands of simplicity without omitting anything crucial to the portrayal of your brand narrative. Your choice of fonts and typefaces, color combinations, any graphics you want to add to your design, and even the style of logo you choose can drastically affect the simplicity of your symbol’s design.
Overcrowded designs can often overwhelm their viewers, which can have the unintended effect of having the consumer miss your brand’s message. Even something as simple as a color palette of two clashing colors, or two incompatible fonts, can result in the logo failing to fulfill its true purpose.
Negative space, also called white space, is, therefore, an important factor of simplistic design. even if you look at the symbol of FedEx mentioned before, the logo design uses white space quite effectively to their advantage.
In short, give each element of your logo its space. That will allow them to shine distinctly, and portray your brand’s message to your consumers, the way you intended it.
Besides simplicity, a brand’s identifier needs to be unique too. It is often observed that in a drive to create a simpler design, logo artists create generic designs. However, such designs are barely able to make the desired impact on their consumers.
Memorability is highly impacted by uniqueness, as generalist designs tend to look similar to others, causing confusion among the consumers, and impacting the number of details a viewer can able to remember.
Industries with high levels of competition need to be extremely careful when it comes to originality. If their logo has any element that could confuse the viewer into believing the logo as representing a potential competitor, it could drive leads to your competition.
That is often why professionals are of the opinion that while the online AI-based logo makers readily available nowadays produce quite attractive results, their designs need to be taken with a grain of salt.
These tools use a library of pre-designed graphics and imagery, which can often result in separate logos created using similar briefs to result in generic designs that look quite alike. A great way to avoid this issue, however, is to hire a professional logo designer who doesn’t just go with your brief but understands the unique needs of your brand, before creating your logo.
Take a look at the Twitter logo.
The design for the social media’s logo is quite simple, with just a plain illustration of a bird’s profile. Yet the design would be almost impossible to confuse with any other brand. Today, if any company tries to create a logo that looks even remotely like the one above, they will have a hard time increasing brand awareness for their business.
Besides its unique design, the Twitter logo is also a testament to the fact that uniqueness doesn’t demand complexity. Rather, the simpler the design, the better its originality is displayed. This balance is an important factor when learning how to design a logo for businesses from different industries.
Similarly, many famous brands like McDonald’s, UPS, Starbucks, and many others have simple logos that would be hard to mistake for any of their competition.
Versatility is another important factor when designing a logo. Brand symbols nowadays need to be displayed on a wide variety of mediums, digital, print, apparel, and sometimes even etchings. Therefore, your logo should have a design that is easy to replicate across these diverse ranges of mediums.
For example, if your logo relies heavily on specific colors to be recognizable, then that could a point against it when it comes to versatility. Essentially, your design should be able to adapt to different mediums, without losing conformity to your existing brand presence.
To understand this concept, suppose that you have created a logo for a business that will need to be printed on many different mediums, from branding merchandise to giant billboard ads. However, the portrayed impact and message should be uniform across each usage.
Let’s take a look at the KFC logo to understand this concept.
The image of the Colonel can be seen everywhere from the restaurant’s giant billboards to their packets of fries or napkins. Despite this drastic change in size and medium, the impact and the projected brand message are the same everywhere.
Versatility and scalability go hand in hand when it comes to logo design. Scalability for the purpose of design means that your logo can fit a variety of mediums without losing any important details of its design that could impact the overall message you are trying to portray.
Logos and graphics in general, which have intricate flairs and tweaks often tend to lose the visual impact of these flairs once the size of the logo gets too small, for example on your website’s header.
Each feature of your brand’s symbol should be prominent and distinct, no matter the medium or the size of the print. If your logo uses an intricate flowing script, or stylized curls and loops added to the design, printing your logo in smaller sizes will result in those fine features escaping from the view of your consumers.
Moreover, when creating a logo, the format of choice should always be vector, rather than raster. That is one of the most important factors which can affect the quality, ease, and reliability of your design no matter where and how large it is printed.
Balance is something that we as humans crave. Anything that seems out of balance leaves us with an unbearable itch, affecting our ability to ignore and enjoy it. But balance doesn’t always mean symmetry. For decades, we have seen the captivating charms of balance in asymmetry too.
However, balance is something that makes a design stand out perfectly. Sometimes we see a design that just looks off to us. That is usually because it lacks balance. This balance is often affected due to the use of mismatched elements within the design, such as the placement and design of the pictorial and textual part of the logo, or an unbalanced mix of colors, etc.
One of the best ways to manage this is to make sure that the proportions and the weight of the various elements complement each other within your design. this will help your consumers get a better visual experience by appealing to their innate sense of balance.
Moreover, using your chosen style of element placement perfectly is also required if you wish to provide your logo with a sense of completeness. If you want your logo to conform to an asymmetrical structure, then your design elements should be placed in a manner that makes the overall image look balanced and in symmetry. A great example of symmetrical balance can be seen in the Yin and Yang design.
However, if you want to go for a more radical asymmetrical design, then you need to ensure that the placement, while not symmetric, should still be in balance, and does not leave its viewers feeling as if something is missing.
Timelessness is something that every company expects from their logo. Changing the symbol that represents your brand is something that a business rarely desires, due to the loyalty and recognition tied to that original design.
Take a look at the Coca-Cola logo.
Since its inception, the company has used the same logo, albeit with a few tweaks here and then, to amass a fan following of millions. Today, the logo with its curving script-like font is one of the easiest brand logos to recognize.
A great way to design a timeless logo is to use elements and design trends which have proven themselves time and again within the industry. These design practices have been in use for a long time, and are more reliable than season fads when it comes to creating a lasting logo.
Overall, many other factors can make or break your logo design. However, if you just follow the factors explained above, you will be able to create a design that will be original, simple, versatile, and perfectly appropriate to represent your business within the market.
And with the market saturated nowadays with designers, knowing what makes a brand symbol pop and last in the market can be an immense leg up in a highly competitive industry.
Anas Hassan is a design consultant at leading branding agency Logo Poppin. He has a deep interest in exploring trends of graphic design and digital marketing. Beside this, he is an avid football fan and enjoys an occasional steak dinner.