A logo is vitally important for any business in any industry. It builds brand identity and generates consumer trust as customers are readily able to identify your goods and/or services and know what to expect from your business. It sets you apart from the competition and helps people remember your business more easily than would have otherwise been possible.
At the same time, you can’t just pick “any old image” to represent your company. You need a logo that accurately represents the nature of your products/services. The shape, colors, and style need to appeal to your target audience. Your logo must be unique, so consumers won’t confuse your company with another company.
The are many different ways to design your logo, and even if you make a logo with a DIY option the following guide can still help you get to know your options and make the font, shape, style, image, and color selections that will meet your current and long-term needs.
There are seven main types of logos. Monograms, also known as lettermarks, are company initials set on a white or colored font. A wordmark is the use of the full company name as a logo. The letters can be either a single color or multicolor; the background is often white but can be a single, solid color.
A combination logo, as the name implies, includes the company name together with an icon-based or image-based logo. Some of these logos are inseparable, as the company name is part of the image design or written in the middle of the image. In other instances, the image and company name are separate and the icon or image can be used on its own if needed.
Icon logos are simple yet powerful if you pick a design that matches well with your business. Apple’s and Twitter’s logos are good examples of effective yet simple icon-based logos. Abstract images, like icons, are simple yet effective in helping individuals remember the nature and brand of the company in question. Emblem logos, which tend to be traditional and old-fashioned in style, tend to resemble a badge, seal, or crest, and typically include the company name. Mascot logos feature an animated character to “represent” the company.
There is no single style that is inherently better than another, but there are some styles that are best for certain types of companies:
- A monogram can be ideal for companies with a long name, as initials are often easier to remember than several words.
- Mascot logos tend to appeal most to families. If you want to brand your firm as a fun, family-friendly one, a mascot can be a great way to do it.
- Icons and abstract images are some of the most common logo styles. They can suit the needs of professional firms ranging from healthcare services to e-commerce websites.
- Emblem logos are most popular with schools, government agencies, organizations, and car companies.
A colored logo design increases brand recognition by a whopping 80%. However, that doesn’t mean you need your logo needs to include all the colors of the rainbow. In fact, 95% of the world’s top 100 companies only use one or two colors in their logo. Additionally, it’s not uncommon for companies to use varying shades of the same color in order to create a visually appealing image without creating an overly colorful logo.
Colors have meaning. They convey a message, so you’ll want to pick shades in line with your company brand, its target audience, and your overall goals. You’ll need to make sure your colors match well with each other and do research to ensure your logo and brand don’t resemble that of another company.
It’s also important to keep your long-term goals in mind when picking a logo color for your company. If you intend to expand your target audience in the future, pick shades and color combinations that allow for expansion rather than locking you in.
- Pink and lilac are often the shades of choice for companies creating women’s products
- Green is ideal for any company promoting eco-friendly products/services or grocery items.
- Blue, red, grayscale, and yellow are the most popular color choices for global brands.
- Red, blue, and green are the colors of choice for online stores.
There are four main font types. Traditional or sophisticated fonts are easy to read yet also regal in design. They are often used by luxury brands, jewelry companies, and companies offering high-end products. Modern fonts are also easy to read yet more casual in nature. At the same time, they aren’t only used by casual firms. Financial companies, healthcare companies, and other professional firms use modern fonts to convey professionalism.
Cursive fonts are ornate in nature. Formal cursive lettering is typically used for high-end brands while informal lettering is used by companies that appeal to a middle-class audience as well as companies offering art-related products and/or services. Display logo fonts are attention-grabbing and are typically used by companies creating a monogram or wordmark logo.
Which font is right for your business? Here are some points to consider:
- It’s often best to choose a font that’s easy to read, especially if you intend to expand your business to countries where English isn’t the national language
- The font should represent the nature of your business, be it traditional, formal, modern, or casual
- The font should appeal to your current target audience and any demographic you are planning on targeting in the future.
Brand names ranging from Shell to Pepsi to Twitter have proven that logos don’t have to be complex to grab attention. In fact, simple, sleek logos are often easier to identify than overtly ornate ones.
Many logos are designed to remind individuals of a company brand name rather than its services. Twitter’s, Apple’s, and Shell’s logos are good examples of this trend. On the other hand, some companies create icons with a caring, personable vibe to generate consumer trust.
HealthLink and PatientPop are just two of many firms that have gone this route. Such an option can be ideal for companies offering products/services to boost one’s health and wellbeing. New companies often do best to pick a logo that helps customers readily identify its products/services rather than focusing on a company name that has not yet gained widespread recognition.
It is very important to make sure your logo looks good on online platforms, offline advertisements, and a wide range of products. Do a “test-run” of your logo before you start using it to make sure it’s versatile enough to meet all your needs.
- Identify your target audience before you pick a logo maker to design your logo.
- Choose a style that would accurately represent your business even if you offer new products/services in the future.
- Once you design an icon, do a search for it online to ensure that it’s not too similar to that of another business.
Consumers are unlikely to spend long hours analyzing the shape of your logo. However, they will see the logo shape and make unconscious associations with certain qualities. Researchers have found that potential customers associate round logos with softness, caring, warmth, and sensitivity. Angular logos lead consumers to associate products with hardness and durability.
Lines likewise convey meaning. Horizontal lines soften angular lines while giving a logo a stable, calm, reliable feel. Vertical lines, on the other hand, convey strength and forward-thinking. Organic shapes (i.e., shapes of animals and natural objects), convey comfort and familiarity.
A logo doesn’t have to use only one shape to convey a message. It can incorporate several shapes to create a winning brand, or use one shape for a log while incorporating other shapes into the business name font. For instance, a square logo accompanied by a business name with rounded letters, can project both warmth and durability.
- What do you want your company to be best-known for? Do you want to emphasize product durability or warmth and a personal connection with your consumers?
- What does your target audience expect from company logos in your industry? Check out some competitors’ logos to see how they use shapes and lines to build confidence in their brand.
- Once you pick a shape, make sure it can be displayed properly on a wide range of platforms.
Designing the right logo for your business is no small task. Paying attention to even the smallest details is a must if you want to create a winning logo that will stand the tests of time. Do careful research before designing your logo in order to identify your target audience and find what they want and expect from companies in your industry.