Whether you’re designing a logo for your business or creating branding for a client, here are 6 foolproof tips for designing an eye-catching logo.
A logo is so much more than just an eye-catching design – it’s the essence of your branding. Your logo visually represents your brand and should express your business’s essence, mission, and identity. Why tell people what you do when you can show them?
Whether you’re DIYing a logo for your freelance business or creating a full-fledged branding suite for a client, creating a killer logo isn’t as complicated as you might think – it boils down to a few fundamental principles. From memorability and responsive design to top tools and templates, here are Janine’s foolproof logo design tips.
1. Keep it Simple
When it comes to logo design, keep it simple. Clean and uncluttered logos are more easily recognizable by your audience and convey an immediate sense of who you are. Generally, keep your logo as minimal as possible to let your brand’s personality shine through.
As you’ll be using your logo across various platforms, the finer details of an overcomplicated logo can quickly disappear across multiple sizes and formats. A strong, timeless logo should have a few key elements that are easily recognizable and clearly convey your message, so take a step back and remove any unnecessary design elements.
2. Make it Memorable
Your logo should make a strong statement and send the right message. You want people to recognize your brand immediately, so making your logo unique and memorable is crucial. Think of how you want your audience to perceive your brand and how you want them to remember you at just a glance.
“When creating a logo, it’s important to ensure the design is unique and memorable while accurately representing the business,” says Janine. “Drawing inspiration from nature or other existing designs can be a good place to start.”
Create a logo that stands out by using simple design elements (such as fun shapes, mascots, or customized typography). While jumping on logo trends can be great for inspiration and staying relevant, logos that play it safe can be easily missed or dismissed in this overly branded world, so do things differently.
To get some original logo inspiration, search for creative logos in your industry, and try to avoid any trends or patterns you notice. For example, tech logos often feature globes and electronics, and dentistry is overflowing with teeth or smiles. While all these motifs clearly communicate what the businesses are about, they tend to blend together. Dare to be different!
3. Consider Design Principles
Every great logo is built on a structure that holds up the design and creates balance and visual interest. Using design principles such as balance, proportion, scale, and symmetry in your logo design process will result in a more professional and visually pleasing end product and give you a better understanding of design rules and how to break them.
“It’s so important to pay attention to scale, colors, and typography,” says Janine. “These factors will affect the end product.”
There are many design principles to consider when designing a logo, such as balance, unity, contrast, emphasis, and repetition, to name a few. While you don’t need to incorporate all of these elements into your design, figure out which works best for the brand you’re designing for and can help you communicate your message more effectively.
4. Design Your Logo for Multiple Mediums
Your logo will appear everywhere your brand is visible – such as your website, business cards, product packaging, and social media accounts. Because of this, your logo must maintain its integrity and serve the same purpose across all channels and mediums. When designing a logo, it’s essential to ensure it works in all situations. One way to achieve this is through visible contrast, but you can also integrate other branding elements, such as textures or patterns, to complement your logo in various iterations.
“Making sure the logo works in different sizes and on various mediums is essential,” Janine says. “A good logo should have visible contrast and clarity when viewed on-screen or printed. The logo should be exported in the proper format suitable for print (CMYK) and on screens (RGB) so that the brand colors are accurate for both mediums and the brand remains consistent.”
5. Consider Your Target Audience
Your logo should reflect your brand – and also your audience. Your logo design should appeal to your target customers and contain elements that align with your brand, business, products, and your audience’s interests.
“Considering how the target audience may perceive the logo is key,” says Janine. “If you miss this step, the business may attract the wrong audience, which could be detrimental to sales.”
Understanding your prospective customers’ needs and how your audience perceives your brand can help you pinpoint a particular look, style, or personality for your logo based on what you want to portray. If you’re unsure, ask yourself what sets the brand apart from its competitors – or, better yet, ask your customers.
This competitive advantage could be authenticity, attention to detail, innovation, sustainability, efficiency, or something else – whatever your point of difference, show it in your logo.
6. Use the Right Tools
Creating a logo for your business can be intimidating, and knowing where to begin is difficult. Fortunately, there are some great tools to help you out. No matter your degree of experience or budget constraints, finding the right tool for your skills, goals, and business needs is essential.
On the one hand, if you have the design chops to create a custom logo, you can use Adobe Illustrator (vector-based) or Adobe Photoshop (raster-based). Both programs provide powerful logo-creation solutions with lots of flexibility and a wide range of tools. Illustrator is great for modern, flat logos, while Photoshop is ideal for the more distorted, edgy, grungy-looking logos.