Why is a Logo so important?
Whether you’re looking for a new pair of shoes, out shopping, or maybe want a quick snack on some fast food, you’ll always be looking for the brands that you recognise. And what is the first thing you instantly recognise about these brands? The logo.
Logos are an underlooked aspect in many businesses, although they are basically the face of your business. People instantly associate the logo with businesses within a second of looking at it, take the McDonalds’ “arches”, a more recognisable symbol worldwide than the Christian Cross.
Want to make a good first impression? A poorly designed logo is definitely not the way to go, it needs to be eye-catching, and tailored to the target audience as well as applying to the business type.
But who can make use of a logo?
Anyone from small individual start-ups, freelancers and entrepreneurs, running any size of company from startup to small and of course large businesses should make use of a well thought through logo design. Anyone starting or in a business needs to make use of a logo as it’s important to appear more legitimate and professional, or perhaps a little less professional in order to appeal to certain target audiences, such as children or online social media businesses, like YouTube.
A Logo can be used any and everywhere that represents the business, such as the products and services the business offers, the office or stores that the business owns, websites, mobile apps, clothing and apparel, and much more that all gather to create a brand identity that makes the name of your business synonymous with the logo itself.
If you want to explore what makes up a brand and how they maintain consistency, check out our article on “What are brand guidelines?” for a detailed explanation.
What exactly makes up a logo?
A Logo doesn’t necessarily have to be abstract shapes and designs, they can simply be the name of the business that is stylised and presented in a way that represents the core values and mission of the business itself, as well as be appealing to the target audience, for example, a restaurant chain’s logo may be more warm and welcoming than a law firm, which may prefer minimalism and a less vibrant colour scheme for a more corporate look.
A logo should contain multiple components including the different elements, in some instances, the graphical element can be taken from the text itself. Alternatively, the use of only shapes and symbols can be utilised to make an iconic and interesting logo and can adhere to certain shapes, such as circles, or its own specific shape unique to the brand. If you are looking for a more detailed explanation on what makes up a logo, and the elements that can or cannot affect it, check out our article on “How a logo is constructed”.
What makes a good logo?
You may notice a certain trend with the majority of logos in a myriad of different business types; simplicity. Having too many features on your logo may be hard for the typical user to digest and recognise quickly, although this doesn’t mean you should not take time to make sure it’s perfect.
Colour, shape, symbols and font all make up the key aspects for a logo and having a clean logo that is simple to consumers is a crucial part of making a recognisable, and effective piece of branding material. Furthermore, making sure that it’s a clear symbol or text that can stand out allows the consumer to quickly identify and remember your company and allow your logo to become synonymous with your brand.
A bold shape or bright colour scheme may catch people’s eyes and draw their attention, with different colours giving off different moods and meanings to the consumer, for example, a baby blue may be more laid back and calming when compared to a glaring bright red. Some colours also complement and mix well with others, such as darker colours being used in combination with lighter colours.
Black and white are also viable colours depending on the level of seriousness and what type of tone that is appropriate for your business. Bright colours will naturally catch the human eye and can add more emotion to the branding of the business. If you want to explore the psychological effects of colours in branding and design in general further, you can check out our article on “Colour Theory” that explains this topic in detail.
A logo can also include text, most commonly being the name of the business, alongside any shapes or patterns it may also include. Many brands use the name of their business as the core aspect of their logo, but may also include elements of shapes or symbols in their marketing as well, for example, Nike is recognisable by both their name logo and their signature tick symbol. Or even not include any text at all, instead perhaps only the first letter of the company name, or simply all shapes and symbols.
In some instances, it is better to use the graphical aspect of a logo in place of the business name, especially on products or watermarks as they may be more recognisable than the name itself.
This is why we would recommend a logo which has multiple components including a graphical or symbol based element alongs side the text based name component of the logo.
The type of font and style of text that you use should also be related to the type of business, such as using italics or a Sans Serif or Serif style text, Sans serif is easier to read due to the lack of embellishment in the characters themselves. Although Serif does have a more stylised and vintage look that may work with certain logo styles or colour palettes. Businesses tailored towards children will likely have a more relaxed font with hand drawn-style lettering, whereas more serious, professional business such as law firms may have a bold, striking and clean font.
What should I include in my logo?
Firstly, it needs to be relevant to the business type that you have, as you don’t want to create a colourful, playful and child-friendly logo if you’re opening a funeral home or a criminal law firm. Once you have determined what type of logo is relevant, there are many ways you can go about creating this logo. Firstly, you need to understand the major differences between the software available to you, and which may be more suitable for your business.
The adobe suite has a great selection of software for you to have your logo created in, with illustrator being very useful due to its ability to create and utilize vector images, allowing the logo to be scaled up or down infinitely without any loss of quality.
Vector imagery is an important tool in the creation of any branded media, including logos, as it allows images to maintain its original quality so that it may be used in a variety of different mediums, to learn more about vector imagery, and how it differs from bitmap imagery, check out our article “What is the difference between Vector and Bitmap images?” to learn more.
Alternatively, you could go the route of having a hand-drawn logo, either digitally or simply as a physical art piece. 3D is also a potential route for creating a logo, either as a 2D logo with a 3D effect to it, or a logo being entirely made within a 3D software and rendered out to create a more intricate and shaded logo with more detailed reflections to resemble a more lifelike object that is actually present in a physical space.
However using a detailed 3D render with intricate detail is not ideal for a logo. Our 3D butterfly, which is our mascot looks great in 3D and when represented on large screens or large prints. But not so great when scaled down to the size typically used on websites and business cards etc.
And so we use the 3D butterfly as a 2D vectorised version that is clean and easily identifiable.
It is also important to understand how you want the audience to feel; welcomed, impressed, intrigued, relaxed, scared? These will all be wildly different depending on the business, but every aspect of the logo will impact the audience’s perception and mood connotation to the logo, and therefore the brand itself.
There can also be many different variations of the same logo, such as the standard, original design, the inverted logo that changes the colours to match different backgrounds, as well as mono, which restricts the logo to one particular colour. The logo also has to be used for many different types of media, such as mobile apps, and social media accounts that would require an icon version of the logo. In order to read more about the different types of logo and where they are used, check out our article here called “Logo Variants and when to use them”.
So what makes a logo so important?
If you haven’t realised by now, the logo is quite literally the face of your company and will be shown off to any and all people who come across your business. The logo will be the centrepiece for any branding you will have, so make sure that it is the best that it can be.
Here at Painting Pixels, we have talented designers that can make bespoke, premium quality logos and branding material so that your logo can be exactly how it needs to be. Check out our Logo Design page to see our assortment of logo designs.
And be sure to check out our YouTube Channel for more interesting and entertaining content.