Six Keys to a Successful Logo:
Brought to you by Concept House Marketing
What are the keys to taking a logo from decent to GREAT? It’s not as simple as you would think, as anyone can make a logo. But it takes real talent and thought to create a great and successful logo. A great logo is able to stay relatively simple, yet can withstand the test of time. It has the ability to adapt to its need, while staying unique. A successful logo also incorporates the perfect font and colors to really take a concept to the next level.
Keep it simple, stupid (or K.I.S.S.) is probably the best known secret in the design world, yet rarely is ever executed to perfection. Simple is often the most effective route to go. A simple logo has the ability to hit on all other aspects needed for a great logo. It allows you to use your logo on a wide range of media both big and small. Simplicity also makes it so your design stands out in the crowd and is easily remembered, thus giving it a better chance to endure the test of time. Below are some examples of logos that have stayed simple, yet couldn’t be more perfect for their brand and proven that over the years.
A great logo has the ability to work throughout multiple generations. If you’re constantly changing your logo every few years or doing large overhauls, did it ever really work in the first place? For a logo to be great it must be memorable and timeless; be able to stay effective 10, 25, even 50+ years from now. Trends come and go, but a truly great logo is timeless.
To have a truly effective logo it should be able to work and be attractive across a variety of mediums. Does your logo work both horizontal and vertical? What about printed in one color? Both big and small? Light and dark? These are all things you should be thinking of when in your concept and design stage. A good trick to ensure your logo is versatile is to design it first in black and white. This allows you to really focus on the concept and how the shapes work off each other. Color can have too much of an impact on what your mind sees when in the design stage, the elements must always come first.
Choosing the correct color scheme for you logo is immensely important. The right choice can help sell your brand and make it easier for consumers to remember. Each color will invoke a different feeling or response and that’s important to remember when choosing your color scheme. Below is a general list on what each color can represent for your logo, both positive and negative.
Positive: Love, Energy, Strength, Passion, Masculine
Negative: Anger, Danger, Warning, Masculine
Positive: Loyalty, Tranquility, Security, Trust, Intelligence
Negative: Coldness, Fear
Positive: Nature, Money, Growth, Fertility, Freshness, Healing
Negative: Envy, Jealousy, Guilt
Positive: Royalty, Luxury, Nobility, Spirituality, Ambition
Positive: Sleek, High tech, Security, Glamorous, Reliability
Negative: Gloomy, Sad, Boring
Positive: Healthy, Happy, Compassion, Feminine
Negative: Weak, Feminine
Positive: Energy, Bright, Creativity, Happy
Negative: Unstable, Irresponsible
Positive: Courage, Confidence, Success, Forward thinking
Positive: Wealth, Valuable, Prosperity
Positive: Protection, Class, Formal
Negative: Death, Evil, Mystery, Boring
Positive: Fresh, Clean, Easy
Negative: Boring, Basic
Research and think about what traits you want associated with your brand. It’s a good idea to not go overboard with color as a logo can become cluttered and clash with too many colors. However it is possible to keep a clean look while still having a multitude of colors, as such brands as NBC and Google have achieved such feats.
One of the most overlooked, or “phoned-in” part of a logo is the font. Getting the font right can easily take a mediocre logo over the top and turn it into a timeless piece of art. Too often will a designer come up with an awesome concept, only to ruin it by accompanying it with a basic, boring, or overused font. One key to avoiding this issue, is to utilize a custom font. Font choice should get the same attention as any other part of the design process. There are two major ways to up your font game when making a logo. One is to create a completely custom font that is totally unique to your brand. The other way to take an existing font and modify it to better fit your message. Both ways will take some effort, but when done right can create some of the most memorable and fun logos around.
Your logo needs to be able to stand out in a crowd filled with hundreds, or even thousands, of others in your market space. And it needs to not only stand out, but also be easily recognized against your competition. To accomplish this you’re best off shying away from the generic and over used icons and symbols. Those tend to include shapes such as arrows, globes, stars, and other basic elements. You should also keep in mind that your logo doesn’t always need to say what your business is or does. There are plenty of huge companies whose logo has nothing to do what their business model.
“What’s important is to create something that you believe is different from anything already out there.” – David Airey (logodesignlove.com)
Let us know what you think makes a good logo in the comments below!