Buying a logo can feel a bit like being a kid in a toy store. With so many designs to choose from, it’s all too easy to get spoiled for choice. Particularly when the decision involves a multitude of color schemes and gizmos to make your logo pop.
Your selection of color, font and special effects can be akin to a bag of pick-n-mix candy. Anything and everything your sweet tooth craves. A treasure trove of chocolate, peanut butter cups and licorice all wrapped up in a handy little package. Creating a sweet assortment pleasing to your taste buds and your eyes.
Unfortunately, not everyone will find your choice in candy as appealing as you do.
When it comes to logo design, it’s even easier to get carried away by all the sweet eye-candy on offer. Just like your bag of tasty treats though, too much of a good thing can be bad. Eat too much and you could end up sick.
Purchase a logo that doesn’t match your business or what you do, and it will be your reputation that takes a turn for the worse. A business logo is a powerful tool. The first thing people notice about any business is the logo. On the flip side, the logo is also the first thing that makes potential clients turn away.
The purpose of any logo is simple. It needs to promote your business as the go-to provider in your field. As such, it’s in your best interests to make sure your logo identifies you, your business and your brand. People need to know who they are trading with.
So, how can you make sure you purchase the right logo design for you and your branding?
Mistake #1 Forgetting Your Brand Image
All businesses, large or small, have an image. From a local corner restaurant to a large, nationwide franchise of burger bars, each company has its own identity. This identity is known as the brand.
Branding is the promotion of the business image across all aspects of the company. From signage on buildings or delivery trucks to marketing posters or business cards. Good branding ensures that the same pictorial imagery is used across everything the business does. Creating a unified, professional company persona.
Take McDonalds for example. Identifiable by the golden arches found on the buildings, the menu, and their burger wrappers. You instantly know the burger you are eating is from McDonalds. That’s not just marketing. That’s branding. It’s the amalgamation of who owns the business and what the business does.
The first rule in any branding exercise is to know who you are and what you do. Your logo needs to reflect this in the color scheme, font choice and imagery. It also needs to match the colors and imagery you are already using on your building or business vehicles.
One of the biggest mistakes when buying a logo, is forgetting your existing brand.
Instead of complementing your business image, a miss-matched logo will detract from it. Creating confusion for your clients. A confused client is a negative one. They will feel lost, alone, as though they can’t trust you or your business. To get back on track, they will run towards your competition and leave you with a loss of reputation and revenue.
Mistake #2 Forgetting Your Client Base
Buying a logo design because you like it is great. As long as it matches you and your business. The problem is it’s all too easy for a business to choose a logo based on the owner’s likes and dislikes.
A logo showing your business name and a picture of a wrench sounds good, and it might look like the best artwork ever. But, if it doesn’t appeal to your customers, it won’t be any good at attracting them to you or your business. That’s particularly true if your business doesn’t even use a wrench.
One of the key elements in any logo design is your customers and their needs.
The focus for any brand has to be on what you offer your clients. They need to be able to relate to your business, to trust you can offer them a great service. Even before they know they need the service from you.
As part of your branding, your logo needs to be your hook to draw your clients in. It needs to cater for their sweet tooth. Not yours. There’s no point giving them licorice if they only like chocolate.
Mistake #3 Following Your Competition
Whilst it’s a good idea to keep an eye on your competition and what they are doing, it’s never a good idea to copy them. Especially when it comes to branding.
Your branding needs to be unique to you and your business. It needs to stand out from your competition. Not disappear into a sea full of logos with similar colors and design.
If your logo imitates your closest rivals, your branding will get confused with theirs. Instead of coming to you, your clients will become patrons of your competition. At your expense. Both through wasting your marketing budget and lost revenue.
Even if there are others in your field of expertise, they will deliver their product in a different way. That individuality is your business selling point. Your branding and your logo need to mirror and promote the exclusive nature of your business.
To be effective, your logo needs to be as individual as you are. Branding identity depends on it.
Mistake #4 Too Much Information
For such a small marketing tool, your logo has a lot of work to do. In a relatively small space, it has to portray who owns the business and what the business does.
The most important thing to remember here is space. Logos are not large. You can only get so much information on them before it becomes overbearing.
Logos work best when they are simple but effective. There is a marketing mantra, “less is more” that comes into its own when designing logos. The last thing you want to do is put too much on something that will be used on items as diverse as pens and billboards.
An overloaded logo will detract from the professional image you are trying to portray for your business. It will look cheap, badly designed, tacky and give an impression of low quality. Not just for the logo but for your business as a whole. The prosperity or failure of your logo determines how well your branding performs in promoting your business.
Business is reliant on the success of the hook you send out to attract potential clients. If the hook has too many sweet treats, some will fall off. Taking your client base with them.
This is where the messaging part of your branding comes in.
Keep your logo as your baited hook, the enticement to come on over and take a closer look. Use marketing brochures, leaflets and flyers as the reel to draw people in and keep them coming back for more.
Mistake #5 Using Too Many Colors or Fonts
In the same way too much information can be distracting, so can an array of different colors and fonts.
Having more than a couple of colors and fonts can make a logo look busy. With each color or word vying for the eye’s attention, the design becomes a hodge-podge of conflicting imagery. An assault on the senses of your customers, sending them careening towards rival businesses.
Worse still, if the elements in your logo don’t match the fonts and colors of your business branding, you’ll be sending a message of division rather than unity. You’ll also be making your business look cheap, unprofessional and not worthy of a client’s trust.
With the reputation of your company at stake, ensuring you keep your branding in mind when you buy a logo is paramount to your business survival.