Everyone has their own ideas of what makes a good logo, that’s the beauty of design, but hopefully we can narrow it down to a few fundamental requirements. Your brand is your most treasured asset, and at the start of every good brand is a beautiful tailored logo. Everything about your logo is a representation of you, your service and your company. People can be quick to judge a business by their logo, all it takes is a quick snapshot and they can make their mind up regarding your business and services. All that simply based on a logo, so you’d better make sure you have a good one!
It doesn’t take a designer that is out of this world to come up with an outstanding logo. In the past I’ve come up with ideas, spent hours or even days designing them, placed them on the table only for my other half to turn around to me and come up with some stunning little number (and trust me she is no designer). You just need a good understanding of your business, your audience, and ultimately what you want to say. I’ve had many clients come up with an idea but it takes a designer to bring that to life and put in on paper.
A good logo is a distinctive, appropriate and practical graphic that conveys the intended message in the simplest way possible. That said, consider these 5 key design principles, which are the basis of every great logo design:
I have said it time and time again the best logos are often the simplest in form. Using Apple and Facebook as a good examples, you can see that both logos feature a simple graphic or icon that are easily recognized. Apple uses an ‘Apple’ and Facebook’s logo is (almost obviously) a big ‘F’, what could be more simple than that?
The real reason simple logos work well is because they’re memorable. A great logo is easy to understand, easy to recognize, and it will get your message across.
Netflix, for example, just consists of ‘Netflix’ boldly written across a red background, boring to some, but by god to people know it. Microsoft the next great example of this; clean, simple and to the point, no fuss and it leaves a lasting impression. They’re so memorable and effective that people are able to recognize the icons across numerous countries.
There are many good examples out there, but equally so, there are some great examples that can stand the test of time. They may slowly evolve over the years, but the main concept and imagery remains strong.
Apple is a great example of this. The logo has been modified over the past 40 years but the general concept hasn’t changed. The best way to achieve this is not by creating a logo based on some fad or trend that will change over time, but by ensuring that it’s relevant and representative of your business.
Ask yourself; would your logo still be effective if:
- It were printed in a singular colour?
- You altered the size, making it as small as a stamp or as large as a billboard?
- You were to print the image as a negative? (i.e. transferred the light background to dark or vice versa)
One way around creating a versatile logo is to begin your design only using black and white. This allows the focus to be put on the concept and shape, rather than the subjective nature of colour. Whilst creating your logo it is essential to take into consideration printing costs – the more colors used, the more expensive it will be for the business over the long term.
Your logo should look equally as good on a business card as it does on a website. Likewise you should be able to transfer this same quality if you were to print your logo on a coffee mug, t-shirt, brochure, store window, or even a billboard. It should look good in both large and small formats.
In other words, it needs to be scalable. This goes back to a clean and simple logo; a simple logo is easier to scale down, while a more complex logo may get lost at smaller sizes. Remember to consider all the different types of mediums where your logo may be displayed.
What logos stand out to you? Get in touch, we’d love to hear from you!