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Logo Making Software Buying Guide

Logo Design is a trademark of any company or organization which represents you in the business world. A professional logo can enhance your company’s professional image and help you in promoting business’s online presence. Logo designing is very important, it helps you to stand out from your competitors and give recognition for your company, product, or service. Nowadays, logo designing services are very expensive but you can get it done in easy way with logo software. You can also get custom logo designed for your business with logo designer tool as per your need.

Logo DesignWell, if you are looking for logo maker tool, the information given here might prove useful for you. Take a look at the points you must keep in mind while considering to buy one.

Buying Guide for Logo Making Software

Free Trial Download: Whenever you buy to plan any logo software, always get free trial download so that you can be aware of the features of the software. Install the software and check it works in a proper way. Once you are satisfied with its functionality, then you can order its complete version.

Free Web Templates and Graphic Symbols: Check collection of pre logo templates and graphic symbols to create stunning business logo design. It is advisable to check fonts, special effects and logo format support, so that you can edit your logo in future.

Read Testimonials: To know about quality customer must read testimonials. See what they say about the logo creation tool. You can get good idea about the usability of the software from user reviews.

Customer Support: It is one of the important points to check, whether company selling this software provides customer support or not, if in case any problem occur. You can also get details about the product you are going to buy by calling customer support. If you have any problem, they are ready to support you.

Comparative Research: While buying do research on other logo Design Training features and quality what they have to offer. Check whether the tool is worth buying or not, it suits your needs what you want. Do comparison between the features offered by other software tools. Always consider a cost factor in comparative research.

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June 17, 2009 Posted by | logo design | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Attract More Clients with a Logo Design

Logo DesignYou’ve probably heard that people buy products and services from people they know, like and trust. And, as I have done, you’ve probably wondered how you can foster more of this “Know-Like-Trust” factor in your business relationships. Pictures are tied to our emotions in powerful ways, so strategically using your Logo Design and brand identity materials (business cards, letterhead, brochures, website, etc.) to enforce this connection is a great idea.

A brand identity kit contains many of the attributes that contribute to the “Know-Like-Trust” factor, in the following ways:

Know — A creatively designed set of materials will make you stand out in your field. Symbolically designed materials, where the graphics are designed to communicate and tell your story, can lead to the prospect feeling that they understand who you are and what you do, helping them to form a connection with you and your business. This contributes to your memo ability and breeds a feeling of familiarity.

Through the consistent, repetitive use of a Logo Design and the supporting visual elements in your marketing materials, people will feel as though they “know” you and your business, even if you have never met face-to-face.

Like — If you look at a business’s materials, and you like their look and feel, you would probably find it easier to like both the business owner and to like doing business with them, as well. A logo with an icon attached to your company name can also make your company seem more approachable, friendly and fun. It can even endear your company name to your potential clients. Cartoon Logo Design Training is highly effective in this capacity, though not appropriate for all professions.

You can also foster a feeling of compatibility through clear information in your designed materials—both in the type of information that you provide and the way that it’s laid out and presented. People like to read text that is straightforward and well written.

Trust — A high-quality, professionally printed brand identity kit can make you look capable, established, and enduring. Professional materials also impart an air of integrity to your business. If your materials look polished and put together, they lead people to believe that working with you will be similarly pleasant.

These entire factors compound to give you—and your business—greater credibility, which leads people to trust you with more and bigger projects, sales, or orders.

June 10, 2009 Posted by | logo design | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Why your Business Brand Shouldn’t Be An Exact Mirror Image of You

Mirror, Mirror on the wall… Who’s The Fairest One of All?” The wicked witch uses this line to ask her magic mirror about her beauty, and time and time again, the mirror always says, “Why, you are, of course!” Then, one day, the mirror answers “There is one fairer than you—and her skin is white as snow.” This simple truth sends the witch on a rampage. She disguises herself, poisons poor Snow White, and puts her into a magical coma.

This tale of jealousy and deception cautions children everywhere that nothing good can come of vanity. But if you ask the average small business owner what differentiates their business from the competition, one of the first answers you’ll hear is “Why, I do. I’m the best at this in the land!”—or some variation on that refrain.

Vanity is not the “fairest one of all.”

Vanity, even when backed by your business acumen or experience, is never pretty. And it’s not universally attractive to customers—unless they’ve worked with you in the past or know you socially. The fact that it’s you running your business probably won’t mean much to the average new customer.

Customers and prospects are more concerned about their needs, their businesses, and their situations than they are about how good you are. What they want to know is how you’re going to help them. And if you’re a one-person business, they’re likely to be more concerned about the fact that you’re the only one there rather than being thrilled about your experience.
And this is where a Logo Design steps in.

Your business brand’s job is to take your one-person business and make it seem established and stable—rather than fly-by-night and risky to work with.

A brand should also make your business seem more “businesslike”— and that means credible, dependable, and customer-focused. A business brand can help you position your business as helpful, concerned about clients, and capable of delivering.

Finally, a brand allows you to speak about and present your business as a separate entity—instead of constantly talking about you, you can talk about your business. In other words, a brand helps to take the spotlight off the entrepreneur and give the business a personality of its own. This allows you to do a bit more “crowing” about your business, without seeming as if you are bragging about yourself.

Keys to separating your business brand from you.

1. Think about how big you want your business to eventually be.
If you’re planning to stay a one-person business, then your business’s brand can probably be closer to your own personality than if you’re planning to grow your business and eventually hire employees. If you are planning to hire people, make sure that your employees will be able to demonstrate the brand characteristics you choose.

2. Look at other businesses in your industry and how they present their brands.
This can help point you in the right direction for your brand and also help you make sure your brand will stand out. Look at the things they talk about and how they talk about their businesses.

See which business’s materials and Logo Design you’re most drawn to and the lessons or suggestions you can pull from their materials and repurpose for your own. Just don’t copy them exactly, or your brand won’t be unique. Look at the pictures they use and the words they describe their businesses with—both elements contribute to your brand.

3. Figure out which of your personality traits are most valuable to your business.
The best way to do this is to think about your target audience and the reassurance it needs to go from being interested in doing business with you to making the commitment.

Some of these traits are likely to be those expected of any business worth working with—fair pricing, good service, and the list goes on and on. So you also need to think about the factors that differentiate you from your competition. You also want to focus on factors that make you appealing to the people you want to hire you.

This is a pretty tall order, but try out your brand on your target audience and see what resonates with them before “carving it into stone”—which, in the case of your brand, means before you print any marketing materials. Test your ideas out with temporary materials or by incorporating them into an elevator pitch at your next networking event. At the very least, call up some of your best clients and run your ideas by them.

4. Consider creating a Logo Design as the face of your business.
If you use a photo of yourself as the primary graphic for your business, it suggests you’re always going to take personal care of all client accounts—which isn’t a message you should send if you’re planning to grow your business or hire subcontractors or assistants. Using a photo also brings in the vanity aspect again. “Look at me, I’m here to do business with you.” may not be the best message to send.

If you keep these 4 steps in mind and create a brand that leaves you and your vanity out of the picture, your business won’t come across as a wicked witch. Instead, you’ll create a brand that will make your business “the fairest one of all” to your best clients and help you live happily ever after.

May 29, 2009 Posted by | logo design | | Leave a comment

The Domino Effect of Changing Your Logo

Logo DesignIt’s a rainy afternoon and you’ve got a hot cup of tea and a box of dominoes. You set them up on end, one next to the other in a snaking line across your dining room table. Then you bump the first domino and watch as the rest fall down, one after the other.

Redesigning your Logo Design is more than just fun and games

Changing your logo is a lot like playing dominoes—once you start, you have to keep knocking over project after project until you’ve got all of your marketing pieces set up again.

Once you decide to create a new logo, you’ll instantly find a whole new list of to-dos. This would include setting up the brand definition, expressing it in a logo, and then making sure that all of the rest of the pieces flow from those

Knocking down those to-dos takes more effort than the simple little bump that topples over the row of dominos.

What does redesigning really mean?

Think back to the first time you designed your logo—the work, time, expense, and thought you had to put into the project. Just because this is a redesign doesn’t mean that it will be any easier than the first time around. In fact, it may be more difficult since you’re more invested in your business and brand than you were when you first launched it.

1. Having a good reason.

You need to have a reason that makes sense from a business perspective. If you’re redesigning your logo because you’re bored, this might not be the best use of your resources. But if you’ve made a major change in your services, target audience, or the benefits you provide, a redesign may be justified.

If you don’t have a solid reason to redesign your logo, reconsider whether a redesign is the right path to take.

2. Hiring a designer.

Finding a designer to create just the right logo Design Tutorials for your company takes time, attention to detail and the patience to really look into the designer’s expertise. You may be lucky enough to already have a designer that you work with. In that case you just have to make sure that they have the time and inclination to work on your project. If you don’t have a designer, you can see my tips on hiring a designer to learn more about the topic.

3. Re-examining your Brand Definition.

If you’re going to redesign your logo, you might as well dig deeper into your brand and make sure that it’s as polished and complete as possible. Going back over your business’s personality, service offerings, product plans, and differentiation will help make sure you’re developing a logo that will help you connect with your best customers. Clearly define who your target audience is and what they want to see in a logo.

4. Redesigning the logo is a big investment.

If you’re going to change your Logo Design, you’ll be investing time, thought and money into the redesign. Make sure that you have the bandwidth and budget to give the project the attention it deserves.

5. Trashing and revising all of your existing marketing materials.

Once your new logo is complete you’ll have to recycle your business cards, letterhead, brochures and other printed materials—and pay to have the new ones printed. Then there’s redesigning your website (and the editing and rewriting that you should do along with that). And don’t forget about changing the digital design templates on your computer—your branded email footer, newsletter templates, Word letterheads, and QuickBooks invoices.

Go through your marketing pieces and just think about what it would take to re-create those. The writing, editing, design, coding, printing… Do you really want to redo all that work? And will the redesign of all of those materials pay off?

6. Making the transition make sense for your clients.

Your clients get attached to your logo. They identify with it as the face of your business. If you just change your logo without saying anything to your clients, it can make them feel disoriented and disenfranchised—like their feelings about your business don’t matter. Changing the way your materials look can make clients wonder if your business has been bought out or if you’ve raised your prices or changed your level of service.

If you do create a new logo, be sure to inform your current and past clients about the change and to explain the reasoning behind the redesign. This simple act can help you keep their trust and keep them onboard with your business through the transition.

Making sure that you’re prepared to address these 6 steps in your logo redesign will ensure that a needed redesign goes smoothly—just like knocking over those dominos.

May 25, 2009 Posted by | logo design | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Then Entrepreneurial Boredom sets in

Logo DesignOnce you’ve seen the Logo Design for what seems like the millionth time, the logo starts to lose its sheen. It no longer seems as brilliant, beautiful or perfect as it once did. In fact, you never want to see it again.

This is when most entrepreneurs start thinking about breaking up with their logo, and getting a new one. They think that this will help them recapture their excitement about their brand.

Why changing your logo should be a last resort

A business’s logo should last for the life of the business—until “death do you part” (or at least until something major happens within the business that necessitates changing the logo—but that’s another article).

Your logo is the “face” of your business for your customers. If you suddenly change the Logo Design, your customers can feel like they are losing a relationship. And they get a bit concerned.

First they wonder “Am I in the right place? It looks different!” Then they think, “Is this the same company that I’ve worked with before and grown to trust?” Then they say, “Does this shiny new look mean that they’re raising their fees now? Can I afford to work with them now?”

You can see how this would be a chain reaction that you’d like to avoid. Not to mention the domino effect that changing your logo has on your marketing—redesigning and reprinting all of your materials with the new look. What a headache!

Keys To Changing Your Mind About Your Boredom

  • Repeat after me: I see my logo more than anyone else does. You assume that since you’ve seen your logo a million times, your customers have also seen it too much and are getting bored of it.
  • This isn’t the case! Realistically think about how often your clients see your logo—once, twice, or maybe four times a month? I promise they’re not as tired and fed up with it as you are.
  • See if you can make your boredom into more of a comfortable, long-term relationship with your logo.
  • Switch your focus. You are more focused on your logo than any of your clients. You are deeply invested in it in many ways — from going through the logo design process with your designer and infusing it with meaning then add the financial and time perspective. Then as you use it, your logo becomes a part of your business and personal identity.
  • Concentrating on your logo this much puts it under a lot of pressure, and gives it a lot to live up to. The next time you feel like you’re getting tired of your logo, put your focus on something else—rewrite some of your website copy, design a new marketing piece, start on a book, or even just step away from the office to get some distance from it. You have plenty of other things to do in your business that would be easier and more productive to do than to make a major change with your logo.
  • If you need to change something, consider changing your Visual Vocabulary. If your marketing pieces are really driving you crazy, change up the other graphics that you have on them—the photos that you use, your background colors and your font treatments. This will change the look of your materials without changing the foundation of your brand—your logo—which isn’t nearly so jarring for your clients.

So, next time you’re looking at your logo and thinking about getting a divorce, take a deep breath and step away from your Design Tutorials! Keep your logo as the visual face your customers remember. Then see if there are smaller changes you can make to your relationship with your logo to keep the love alive.

May 22, 2009 Posted by | logo design | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

No Logo?

The initial lack of customers and cash flow often causes new small business owners to put off designing a logo and marketing materials professionally “until they get a few clients” or “until they get started.” Unfortunately, designing their own marketing materials when they launch their businesses instead of having them professionally created will make getting those initial clients more difficult and may result in a business that will not succeed.

Many entrepreneurs choose to Logo Design their own marketing materials when they launch their businesses, especially by creating their first business card. Or sometimes they will have an amateur designer, friend, or relative create the design. There are several reasons why this is not the best idea. An amateur logo design and business card can make your business more likely to fail for a number of reason. Logo Design

Your business will not look stable. It will appear to be more likely to fold or to fail. Clients will not have confidence in doing business with you. Would you do business with someone who seems to be on unstable footing and who might not be in business by the end of your project or after you have purchased an item?

You will look like a very small business. Large, successful businesses would never consider doing business without professional, originally designed marketing materials. Using materials that are not professionally designed (i.e., Microsoft or Vista print templates) makes your business appear even smaller and can possibly indicate that you cannot perform to or meet the standards required.

You will look unpolished and rough. Not having a professional “look and feel” can make it appear as though your business does not matter to you. Customers may get the impression that you do not care about the way your business presents itself, which might indicate that you would not care about the quality of your work or the way that your work reflects upon their business.

You will look unfocused. Unprofessional, uncoordinated marketing materials can make your business look “jumbled” or confused. If you have a business card with one look and feel and a Web site with another, this creates a confused—and confusing—look and feel for your business. This can also cause an identity crisis for a small business. When looking at your differently designed materials, potential clients may be fooled into thinking that they are looking at materials that represent different companies.

About half of all businesses fail within their first few years. One source of failure that is commonly cited by experts is sloppy or ineffective marketing. If your marketing materials do not stand out from those of your competitors, your sales will suffer.

When you start a business, you need to create the quickest possible route to business success. A logo Design Tutorials helps to create this by contributing to your business’s visibility, credibility, and memorability—three factors that will help your business to grow and achieve success. So, while putting off your logo development may seem like a prudent idea from a cash-flow point of view, it could result in your business never getting off the ground. It can also lead to your business folding when it would otherwise succeed.

If you think that you can’t afford to design a Logo Design when starting your business, consider the outcomes—how can you afford not to?

May 19, 2009 Posted by | logo design | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

A Logo Design Without Your Name… Can Be A Big Branding Pain!

Logo DesignI often get asked to develop a small business’s logo as a symbol-only logo. But for many small businesses, this isn’t the right choice for a couple of reasons:

Designing a symbol-only logo is a much more complicated (and often more expensive) process, because the symbol has to:

Carry a lot more meaning — there’s no text to help explain the business. It’s important that your logo has some meaning and a role in explaining your business — and that’s a lot for a little symbol to do all by itself.

Be entirely unique all on its’ own. I don’t need to tell you that there are a whole lot of logos out there. A lot of the basic shapes — and even some of the more complicated ones — are already “owned” by big corporations. But you can still use variations or combinations of those shapes when they’re designed into a Logo Design with your company name.

Communicate to your audience. The more obscure the symbol design that you create, the less likely that your customers will understand its meaning. Or they may interpret it incorrectly. Either way your clients will feel alienated — and that’s never good.

If you do create a symbol-only logo, you’ll have a couple of challenges with your brand identity:

It will take a lot more time and effort to educate your target audience about your business. Think of all the symbol-only logos that are really memorable, like Nike or Apple. The reason that those are so memorable and well-known is that each of those companies has a very large advertising budget. They can afford to dedicate people and time to getting the word out. Their deep pockets build visibility and encourage recognition. Small businesses just don’t have those kinds of resources.

Trademark infringement can be more of a problem — from both sides of the fence. It can be very difficult for your designer to design a logo that won’t look like any other trademarked logo out there, regardless how hard they try.

First of all, it’s hard for a designer to comprehensively research all of the other trademarked logos just to see what you’re up against. However, the Trademark Office has more thorough tools and methods of researching the other existing logos out there and they might find one that you overlooked.

Secondly, logo Design Training and trademarks can be a bit subjective. Just because you and your designer think that the design that you’ve created doesn’t infringe on other logos, the Trademark Office might reject your application based on their interpretation of “similarity”

And you’re not just worrying about what the Trademark Office thinks. Any other business with an existing trademark could also challenge your application. They can even ask you to cease-and-desist using your logo after it have been trademarked if they held their trademark to a similar logo first. While surrendering might not seem like such a bad thing, remember that you’d also have to destroy any existing printed collateral, forfeit your trademark (and the trade marking process isn’t cheap!) and redesign all of your materials. You’ll also lose the equity and memo ability that you will have built up in your logo if you do have to redesign.

If you do finally manage to design and trademark a symbol-only logo, you’ll have to be extra-vigilant about making sure that other companies don’t design a mark that’s similar to yours. You are ultimately responsible for “policing” your own trademark and will have to stay up-to-date on trademark applications. Alternately, you could hire someone to keep an eye on new trademarks for you but that can be expensive.

You can easily avoid all of these complications by designing a combination Logo Design that includes both a symbol and your company name. Once you’ve designed your combination logo, you should always use the components together. This helps avoid potential legal issues like those mentioned above.

May 18, 2009 Posted by | logo design | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Types of Logos: Text, Symbol and Combination Logo Design

Logo DesignThere are three basic types of logos: text, symbol, and combination logos. The type of logo that will work best for your company depends on a number of considerations, such as the size of your company, the uniqueness of your name, and a variety of other factors.

Text Logo Design

A text logo (also sometimes called a logotype or word mark) is a logo largely made up of the text of the company’s name. This type of logo can have some graphic elements—lines, boxes, borders—that interact with, surround, or even form the letters. However, the graphic elements should be used as an accent to the text, not as a major or equally-weighted part of the logo.

A text logo works well when:

  • You have a multi-word business name. If your business name is made up of many words, that are not commonly or easily abbreviated, or when an abbreviation may not be appropriate developing a text logo will keep the logo Design Training as simple and clean as possible.
  • You’re working with an innovative, unique business name, as with Yahoo or Google. In each case, the business name is enough to make the logo memorable.
  • You’re designing a logo for a large company that offers many types of products, services, or a combination of both, that may be hard to define or “wrap up” in a single picture or symbol.
  • You’re designing a logo “for the long haul”—there is less concern about your company “outgrowing” a text logo—they are timeless and classic.
  • Trademark protection is highly important—as long as your business name is unique, then a text logo will also be unique.

A text logo may not be the right choice if:

  • Your business name is not unique; this can mean difficulty for building your brand recognition. Then, without a symbol, the Logo Design will be more difficult to remember or to associate with your business.
  • Your business name does not describe what you do; it can be hard to tell what products or services you offer when just a text logo is used. Taglines or other graphic elements will need to be employed to tell your audience more about your business.

May 12, 2009 Posted by | logo design | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Logo Design Questions: Answered!

This time, I wanted to send over an interview that I did with Computer Arts magazine in the UK.

The interviewer, Tom Dennis, asked a lot of really thought-provoking questions, and I thought that maybe wanted to share the results with you.

As always, let me know if you have other questions that I can address in future issues.

1. Can you briefly explain who you are and your history/expertise on branding/logo design? (for background)

I started my business, elf Design Training, 6 years ago, to help small businesses design their logos and brands. I’ve worked with over 400 small businesses to design their logos, and I’ve helped several hundred of those build their brands out to include websites and other marketing materials. I’ve also written several eBooks on brand definition, design and websites, and my work has been published in design journals and books in several countries.

2. Some people say that logo and design doesn’t matter and doesn’t make a difference. What would you say in response?

In a small business, especially when it comes to 1- and 2-person businesses, a logo and brand designs have a huge role to play in the business’s image.

A professionally designed logo can make a person operating a business out of their home look like a much more serious venture — it can make them look established, stable and successful.

A logo makes a 1-person company look less like a freelancer and more like a business, which helps establish trust and can make the sales process much easier.

3. Can the right logo and image really make a difference to a brand?

A small business’s Logo Design has 2 major jobs.

The first job is to create a “face” for the business. In small businesses, this is especially important because it will differentiate the business from the entrepreneur running the business. It helps to establish an identity and personality for the business.

This “face” is also helpful if the business decides to grow — the business won’t be so intertwined with the entrepreneur when it is time to grow, and it will make it easier for clients to accept working with other employees.

The second job is to tell the business’s story. This visual communication is important to instantly communicate with a prospect in today’s high-speed, short attention span culture. A well crafted logo will help a prospect understand what a small business is all about.

4. Do you think the wrong visual branding can actually damage a brand? Can you think of any examples?

Sure — the biggest way that a company’s visuals can damage their brand is if the company doesn’t tell the truth in their branding.
Logo DesignIf a small business logo is designed based on what the customer wants to hear instead of on the business’s personality, services and differentiators, then this can backfire. If your logo has one message, and then you tell the customer something else when you’re having a conversation with them, then that can reduce the trust that

Another way that the visuals can damage a brand is if they have nothing to say — if they’re designed just based on trends or to be “pretty”.

The next is if a company doesn’t use their visuals consistently. If, for example, a small business uses different logos across their marketing pieces — one version of the Logo Design on the website, another on a business card, and so on. Or, if the other visual elements are used inconsistently (“Visual Vocabulary”) across all of the marketing materials.

Many potential clients look over the entire marketing package as they make a buying decision. If the business card they received looks substantially different from the website that it refers them to, then they may wonder if they’re at the right site — which is not the first impression a business owner wants their site to make!

5. What do you think is it about first impressions that count so much?

Customers look at a company’s marketing materials and make a decision about the quality of the company and about whether their services are a good fit for their needs almost immediately.

This decision is based on the words and images in the marketing materials, the personal presentation of the business owner (if the first impression is a face-to-face meeting) and on the potential clients’ instinct and past experiences.

So, it’s important that a small business do all they can with the aspects of their marketing that they can control so that they can create the best first impression possible.

6. What do you view corporate identity as and why is it important?

For a small business, I view the corporate identity as all of the materials that identify the business — the business name, logo, Visual Vocabulary, taglines, and commonly-used text. All of this together makes up the face of the business, and gives customers something to visually identify with the business aside from the entrepreneur himself or herself.

These elements help the customer to see the business as a larger entity than just the entrepreneurs themselves. This abstraction of the business as a separate being from the entrepreneur can help the business to be taken more seriously.

7. What do you think is it about bad design that lacks trust and what is it about good design that can have the opposite effect and can really encourage someone to buy?

Good design will communicate the right message about the business to the prospect quickly. A good design will give the intended message to a wide range of clients in the target audience — a lot of people will “get it”. And, ideally, it will also be memorable and unique, so that it will help to build lasting brand value for the business.

Good design builds trust through this communication — by making the prospect feel like they understand the design, and by extension, that they understand the company behind the design. The memorability also builds trust by fostering a feeling of familiarity with the business and the brand — the feeling that they “know” your company. Good design can put your business and your prospect on the same side — and can make the prospect feel like your business is a good fit for their needs.

Poor design will miss the mark in one or more of these categories — it may be meaningless, may require too much explanation or thought to understand, it might not tell the correct story about the business it represents, or it might be inconsistent.

Poor design lacks trust because it creates a feeling of alienation and separation between the viewer and the business. Instead of making them feel like they understand your business and that they can be close to it, poor design makes them feel like an outsider.

8. Is there anything a client can do to help ensure the best solution from their side?

I recommend that my small business clients do a few things to make sure that their designs will help them build trust.

The first is to really spend some time working on their Brand Definition. In order to create the right design for your business, you have to know what that design needs to say to your audience.

The next is to build a “focus group” of their best clients and target prospects, and that they run the designs-in-progress by this group. It’s essential that the members of the focus group be people in their target audience — if you put your mom and your best friend in the group, and they’re not in your target audience, then that can skew the results.

The last is to use the logo and other visual elements consistently across all of their materials — this will help potential and existing clients feel more familiar and comfortable with your business.

9. How hard is it to get clients to identify their strengths and weaknesses when it comes to logo design?

The hardest thing for an entrepreneur to do with their Logo Design is to have them look at the logo from their customers’ viewpoint, and to take their personal tastes out of the equation. Most entrepreneurs want to approach their logo design the same way they’d pick out interior design details — they want to love every detail.

But, it’s important for them to look at the design objectively, and to evaluate it from the potential clients’ perspective — from the viewpoint of someone who knows nothing about your business, and who may be a little suspicious of you to start out with. What graphics will tell them what the business is all about, and help them to decide to make a purchase?

10. How important is consistent design for a brand? Should designers be aiming to make everything the same style?

I think that for a small business, with a limited marketing and outreach budget, consistency is important.

Bigger brands have the advantages of big budgets, more advertising impact and strong name recognition. For example, Nike and Starbucks often change the look and feel of their advertising campaigns. But, they’ve built up the brand recognition and awareness based on their company name — so consistency from campaign to campaign is less important.

For a small business, the lower marketing budget and lack of a marketing department mean that every piece of the marketing campaign should build off each other. Having consistent design in a small business’s brand makes the overall brand stronger and more effective.

11. Can you define what you consider to be really terrible graphic design? Do you see any branding at the moment out there that is bordering on the ridiculous or you think just won’t work?

Four things come to mind as “really terrible graphic design” for small businesses:

  • Complete lack of consistency, which means that every piece of design for a company will stand on its’ own
  • Telling the wrong story: Either telling lies about the company through the design, designing what you think your client wants to see, or not knowing what story you’re trying to tell
  • Empty, meaningless design: Design that doesn’t try to tell any story, and just falls flat without content.
  • Design Tutorials that’s do-it-yourself, done by an entrepreneur who hasn’t educated themselves on design first.

May 8, 2009 Posted by | logo design | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Keep Your Logo Design Simple

Logo DesignHave you ever seen a logo that looked like a jumbled mess of drawings? Where there are so many elements competing for your attention that you don’t know where to look or what it all means? Or where there are so many layered elements that they’re all confused together?

The job of your logo is to communicate what your business is all about in an instant. But if you try to say too much in that instant, it’s more likely that your clients and prospects will either not get the message at all or that they’ll get the wrong message—and wind up pulling the wrong information out of an overcomplicated Logo Design.

The way to avoid confusing your clients with your logo is simple: to just keep it simple. Just like the KISS principle.

Wikipedia says: “The KISS principle (acronym for “Keep It Simple, Stupid”) states that design simplicity should be a key goal and unnecessary complexity avoided. It serves as a useful principle in a wide array of disciplines, such as software development, animation, journalism, photography, engineering, and strategic planning.”

And, let me add here—it applies in brand Design Tutorials as well.

So, how do you keep your logo simple?

There are a few easy steps to creating a clear, simple logo that communicates your message to your audience instead of confusing it.

1. Keep the brand story that you’re telling with your logo simple and don’t try to say too much.

Your logo should tell the story of your business’s brand. Your business’s story is made up of four parts:

  • Your business’s personality
  • The type of services or products you offer (either by talking about what you do, or better yet, showing your customers the need you can fill or the problem you can solve)
  • What makes you different from your competition
  • Who you can best help

When you sit down to create your business’s story, you’ll probably find that you have a lot to say about these four story parts. And the details will probably be complex and involved.

So, the next step in creating a logo is to take your story and scale it back to one, or possibly two, main ideas that you want the viewer—your potential client—to see in your logo.

This simplified story is the key to making sure that your logo will be able to be designed in a simple way. If you’re trying to tell a complicated story, then your logo design will probably need to be complicated to communicate everything. But if your story is simple, then your logo can be simple as well.

2. Keep the design of your logo simple—don’t include too many details in the icon.

A logo that contains a lot of visual elements may turn out to be too complicated to allow viewers to assimilate all of the information at once. Keep the number of shapes, lines and other Design Training elements at a minimum to make the logo as clear and clean as possible.

Limiting the number of elements and keeping them all at the same relative level of detail to each another makes it likely that you’ll end up with a logo that’s also scalable. If you include too many design details, it’s more likely that when you scale the logo down, some design elements will be too small to see or distinguish from one another or even to print well. Simplifying the design of your logo can help to ensure that it will be scalable.

3. Keep the icon and the name of your company separate.

If you layer your company’s name on top of the icon in your logo, then your company’s name can be harder to read. And if you have text on top of the icon, it will be harder to see the icon, much less grasp what it means. Separating these two elements from one another will make them both easier to read and understand.

May 6, 2009 Posted by | logo design | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment