How to design a logo?
A logo is like the storefront of your business – It is the image of your brand. It has an impact on how your customers will perceive your brand.
But what defines a logo really? How to design a logo? How long does it take?
We will take you through our logo design process and illustrate with examples of work at Outsourcify.
1: First, what’s a logo?
Before we start, you need to know what a logo is.
A logo is a symbol made of images and texts to identify your business. Logo can help your business stand out from your competition and more importantly it is here for your customers to understand who you are and what you do, but not only and not in every scenario.
A logo is simply important because it is what people, not necessarily your customers but also potential ones and others, will remember about your brand – even perhaps not remembering a name, they may remember an image.
This image can be more memorable as it had potentially triggered an emotion in them in the past.
So at this stage, it is important to make it right, unique and yet simple enough – this is the whole complexity of a logo design.
2: Client Discovery
It is fundamental to deeply understand the business background and needs of the customer. For this we, at Outsourcify, like to start with sending a logo questionnaire to our customer and let them brainstorm between their team before engaging a further brainstorm together.
This questionnaire covers questions about their business, their target, the pain points about the potential existing logo, their competitors and the graphic expectations for the new logo. So once they’ve answered this questionnaire, we gather with the customer’s stakeholders and brainstorm around the questionnaire together to detail and perhaps help filling in unanswered points.
Going through these questions such as ‘what they want people to associate with their business? Who is the business’s target audience? Who is the competition? Etc.’ helps monumentally to define the bases in order to start on the right tracks. Equally so for the customer than us really – this helps them think deeper into elements they perhaps never thought about, and us to truly understand what they have in mind.
Once we’ve understood the whole idea in every detail, we brainstorm between the members of our team and set the design directions we could take. At this stage, it is important to make a lot of research before jumping into any conception
3: Researches on references
After we’ve set the perimeter of actions with our team, we start to research inspirations, design trends, what idea inspires us whether imagery, shapes, colors, lines, font style, logo techniques, etc. We regroup here ideas and references based on the keywords that emerged from the scope – in other words we create a moodboard.
We believe it is important to spend quite a bit of time on this research phase, without rushing things – to make sure we get the right ideas and design directions.
Once this moodboard is done, we brainstorm again around it with the whole team and try to filter down ideas and select the best of it.
4: Finally, let’s sketch together!
Once we get the right direction for the project, we are able to start to sketch out ideas following the moodboard.
So we try to play with many elements to come up with more concrete ideas of potential unique logos. At that stage we keep everything in sketch and not using design softwares just yet.
Anytime we design a logo we have to be concerned about where the logo will be used and how the client uses the logo. It should ‘work’ anywhere and still stand out enough. From a website to products and print.
Nowadays, there are a thousand logos in the market. Many of them look too similar to each other and sometimes you don’t even know how different they are between one another. That’s the major reason why it’s very important to create something unique – this is to make people remember your company.
5: Select and prepare the work for presentation
After the ideas have been sketched out we discuss internally and select the best ideas. Once done, it’s time to finally design them properly on Illustrator!
We usually choose at least three ideas to develop on Illustrator. We perfect them more than sketches and we play with fonts and colors.
Once we have these drawn out, we make again a selection of the best work. Indeed as we move forward on some ideas, we realize some have more potential than others so we need to prioritize depending on the idea and vision we have in mind for these specific logos.
At this step, colors are very important. It is not only about making your logo outstanding and beautiful but it is essentially about how you wish to present your brand in the eyes of your customers – what feeling you wish to transmit to them when they see your logo for the first time.
Colors have their own meaning and personality. For example, if the company is in the technology business we will tend to try with blue, green, purple or some color schemes around that using gradients. However, there is no right and wrong, it depends on how the company wishes to present themselves in front of their customers. Don’t stick too much with the rules!
Once we are ready with our first designs, we present them nicely in a document with mockups and on light/dark backgrounds to then present them to our client.
Rounds of feedbacks are made from here on out and we usually apply changes on them by doing a mix and match of colors, fonts, shapes etc. to create a second round of three new logos.
We go through this process several times to finally come up with a final logo that the client is very happy with.
6: Set up the corporate identity
After we’ve got the final logo design, we start preparing the corporate identity document. This document describes elements used in the logo (colors, fonts etc.) and how to use this logo.
For example we explain how to use the logo on light and dark backgrounds, on images, what minimum margins to use around it, what minimum size should the logo be etc.
Next to this Corporate Identity book we prepare several types of use files such as .svg, .png, .jpg, .eps etc. for different purposes either being digital or print.
As a result
Well, we’ve seen that a logo design is not as easy as it seems, and it is definitely not a topic to consider lightly.
Indeed, a logo being the very first image, the identity of a brand, it is important to allocate a lot of reflection around it in order to build the right image and so communicate the right message.
Want to design a brand new logo? Feel free to ask!
Thank you for reading to the end!