We’ve all been there at one point or another: that day we look down at our business card or letterhead and say ‘Crap, this doesn’t fit me anymore.’
Maybe you’re actually brand new in business and trying to develop that perfect logo at the start to last for years.
Either way this is the article for you. Today as part of Branding Month we’re going to be talking about the most widely understood part of your branding: logo design. (In the design world this is often called a “visual brand” or “style” as well, in case you’ve ever heard that and wondered. )
It’s important to remember that a great logo isn’t “just a logo.” It represents who you are, how you want to be perceived, who your ideal customers are and what they are most looking for. If you as the business owner aren’t clear about that, then you’ll end up with a flat uninspiring logo that falls short of “clicking” with you and your company.
What you need:
Your brand clarity
A truly great graphic designer will ask a lot of similar questions to last week’s article and the 5-Day Branding Challenge. If you haven’t taken the challenge, I encourage you to check that out now. That information will form the basis of a lot of what your designer will need.
Some visual starting points
Collect logos and designs that “speak” to you and what you want to emotionally convey. Obviously these won’t be the end point for your logo nor will your logo be a copy of one of these, but sometimes we have a hard time putting words to what we’re looking for and some pictures can help.
Think about the future
Answer one more critical question: “How do I see my business called to grow in the next 5 years?” This can give direction for making the design more long lasting and in harmony with your growth – even promoting it!
Some tips about finding a good graphic designer:
Obviously I’m a little biased, being a designer myself, but that isn’t to say I’m the only good designer out there. I am friends with several amazing graphic designers and each has her own unique style. Here are some things to look for in a designer:
Do they collaborate with you or just “do the work”?
Are they asking deep questions or just wanting to know your color preference?
Understand when it comes to cheap designs, you get what you pay for.
Sometimes you need something just to start, but when you’re ready to really explode then you may want to consider a more professional rebranding.
Look over their portfolio.
Does their style fit yours? What do their customers say?
Think long term.
You want a designer you’d like to work with long term for other design projects like free offers, ebooks, hand outs, etc. Having someone you like and trust that already knows all about your brand because they helped develop your logo is a huge time saver in the long run. That way you don’t have to re-explain everything to a new designer for each project.
What comes with your logo?
Ideally you should get lots of sizes and shapes as well as a branding guide for fonts, colors, etc. Some designers also include stationary, business cards and social media. Make sure either way that they include the “vector” artwork which is usually a .ai or .eps file. This is critical for any future designers or projects you may have. You never know when your beloved designer may move to Arizona and disappear forever – get those files!
Get the help you deserve for your branding.
If you're tried of DIYing and hodgepodging your brand. If you're confused by what a tangled mess your marketing has become. If the very idea of tackling all this is stressing you out - then I want to invite you to have a casual cup of virtual tea together. We'll talk about your goals, your dreams and how to make them a reality while removing all the overwhelm you feel.