When you think about Coca-Cola, you instantly associate it with red and the white cursive lettering. When you think of Twitter, the silhouette of a distinct blue bird comes to mind. If you see someone in public with a checkmark on their shirt, you know it’s from Nike without needing to see the brand’s name written anywhere.
Logos are powerful key components of any business’ marketing strategy. Without a memorable logo, you won’t be able to build up the best possible brand recognition.
But what makes a great logo and what options do you have?
If you’re at the beginning of your start-up journey or seek to improve your current logo, look no further! This article will give you an overview and tips for creating the best logo for entrepreneurs.
Why Are They Important in Business?
Logos rule the marketing world, but why are they so important? What makes them irreplaceable for any business? Well, here are three of the main reasons your logo is important:
A well-designed logo serves as the main identifier of your business at first glance. You want your customers to associate your logo with your service or product in an instant.
In a world of mindless scrolling through social media and driving past billboards within seconds, this instantaneous link is key. With a unique and memorable logo, your business stands out against the competition and secures your target audience’s attention.
Whether it’s a good or bad one, your logo is responsible for people’s first impressions of your business. Ideally, your logo ensures a strong good first impression for potential future customers and investors.
We’ve all come across logos in strange fonts with confusing, abstract elements and colours that are too bright. If your logo looks unprofessional or confusing, it’ll have a negative effect on your customers’ perception of your business. You want your logo to represent you and your business, both positively and professionally.
We all have that one friend or family member who won’t buy any computer or phone that doesn’t have a half-eaten apple on the back of it. It doesn’t matter to them how good Apple products actually are in comparison to other brands. That’s because the logo on the back of your phone matters in social contexts.
Apple is one of those brands that has become a status symbol for many. The list of recognizable and desirable brand logos is extensive and ever-growing, depending on trends. As an entrepreneur, you want that same fanatic trust and loyalty of consumers, and it starts with your logo.
“I think great brands and great logos go hand in hand. A crappy product won’t be helped by a great looking logo. Similarly, a great product with a very forgettable brand logo might not get the traction needed to be a success.” – Rob Janoff
What Types of Logos Are There?
The average consumer doesn’t usually actively question or analyse the components of a logo. If you’re in the process of considering what your logo is going to look like, you need to know what options you have.
There are three main classifications of logos: logotype, logomark, and logo luckup.
Logotypes are among the most common logos that entrepreneurs use. It’s a classic design that refers to the logo being entirely made up of letters, the company’s name in most cases. Many businesses create their own font to match or represent what products or services they’re offering.
A logotype logo can be further divided into three sub-categories: wordmark, lettermark, and letterform. A wordmark logo usually contains your company’s entire name. A lettermark logo, on the other hand, refers to the initials of your company. For example, the HBO or BBC logos are classified as lettermark whereas Pepsi, FedEx, and Google have wordmark logos. A letterform is a logotype that only uses the first letter of the company, like Facebook or McDonald’s for example.
Logomarks’ designs centre around a graphic or image as opposed to containing a typeface. Relying entirely on a visual representation of your business is difficult to navigate, but can be rewarding. The design has to be flawless and represent your business perfectly, whether it’s an abstract art or a specific image.
In a way, logotypes set the tone and reflect a core value. Apple’s logo is as simple and timeless as the interface of their products, the company’s main feature that attracts customers. The art style and smallest details of your logomark logo determine how well consumers will recognize your brand.
The final type of logo is the logo lockup. This term describes the combination of a logotype and logomark into one logo. It can even contain a slogan or motto.
Taking the best of both worlds makes for a common logo choice for many companies. On one hand, it ensures brand recognition with a memorable symbol or graphic. On the other, a logo lockup presents the consumer with the name of your business in order to create an association between the two elements.
Use a logo lockup if you want your new business’ name out there – it also comes with the added bonus of already having a distinct graphic.
There are more sub-distinctions including using mascots, emblems, icons and many more. However, logotypes, logomarks, or a combination of the two are the main categories to choose from.
What Makes a Great Logo?
According to an interview with Rob Janoff, the designer of the Apple logo, logo designs adapt to the trends of the time they are made in. That means, whether it’s a great logo depends on whom you ask during a given time period.
Consistency and Reliability
Frequently redesigning your logo is a bad idea. Even redesigning it once poses the risk of having to rebuild your brand recognition and marketing from scratch. Nail the design the first time to avoid putting extra roadblocks in your own path. So, what makes a logo great?
Despite Janoff’s observation, the Apple logo’s main shape hasn’t changed since 1977, showing that simplicity can overcome trends. Consumers don’t want to spend precious seconds of their day decrypting a complex logo design. That’s true for the 1970s and still rings true today. Uniqueness is great, but don’t overdo it. Design your logo with simplicity in mind.
Despite its simplicity, an entrepreneur’s logo works best if it has a unique and memorable design. That’s what makes it so hard to design a good logo. The challenge is to combine simplicity with a creative design that people will remember. A forgettable logo isn’t worth your time and resources, so make sure it’s not a generic shape and has a characerising feature.
Choosing the right colour is one of the key ingredients to a great logo. Psychology teaches us that colours can have different effects on our mood. That is true in everyday life situations such as traffic sign colours that have specific meanings, but there is a whole science behind the meaning of colours used in branding and marketing.
Conduct extensive research on the right colours for your logo using websites such as The Psychology of Colours. Iconic logos like those for McDonald’s, Coca-Cola, or Twitter show the power of choosing a good colour for your logo.
If you want your logo to include text, choose the font with great care. We already covered the importance of a professional-looking logo that is easy to read and recognizable. Design your logo with a unique font, but keep it readable and not too complex.
How to Create a Logo For Your Business
Now that you know the basics of what makes a good logo for entrepreneurs, you need the tools to develop one for yourself. We’ve compiled a list of resources to help you obtain the ideal logo for your business.
Hire a Logo Design Service
The most promising but also most costly way to go about your logo is hiring a professional graphic designer to create it for you. There are graphic design companies or freelancers on websites such as Fiverr.
Once you find the right graphic designer, make sure to tell them your vision and what you want your logo to represent. Give them as much information as possible, and ideally have pre-written notes on what you want for the best results.
Use a Website
Websites such as Wix offer generators and interactive tools that make it easy for entrepreneurs to design their own logo. By answering a few questions, these websites will generate a good logo for your business. This option is not as costly as hiring a professional, depending on the website you use, but that fact makes it also a risk for poor quality. Be careful about the website or online tools you use, and don’t settle for subpar quality.
Design a Logo Yourself
If your budget doesn’t allow for hiring a professional or paying a fee for an online tool, consider designing a logo yourself. This option is only for those who have a creative talent and know how to use digital painting software. Krita or Clip Studio Paint are both free and easy to learn software for this purpose. If you already have Adobe Photoshop for other projects, use it for a logo design as well.
Regardless of what service or tools you end up choosing, consider our tips and scout the competition before designing your own logo.
If you want to learn more about effective branding, visit our article “Start-up Branding Strategy for Entrepreneurs.”
An entrepreneur’s logo is one of the cornerstones of your marketing and branding. Brand recognition depends on how well you’ve chosen your logo. Make sure to keep it simple and consider every little detail of your logo before settling on the final design. If your business is successful, your logo needs to endure the test of time and represent you and your business in the best and most appropriate way possible.