Logos are the most important part of a company's visual identity. There are two stages to finding one: defining your brand, then exploring a range of design ideas.
First step: Make sure you’ve defined your brand
Start by choosing 3 keywords that will define the personality of your brand (e.g. bold, innovative, simple). These three concepts are the core of the identity you want to build, and are how you want people to see your company. Once you’ve defined these three concepts you'll turn them into visual concepts – most importantly, your logo.
Aside: Is a logo and a brand the same thing?
Many people confuse logos and brands. A logo is a graphic representation of the name of a company (text or text and icon). A logo is the minimum expression of the brand. A logo and brand convey the same essence.
Second step: explore design ideas
Once you've got a clear definition of your brand, you are ready to start designing! The process always starts of exploratory and iterative: You need to see ideas on paper to know if they're right for you. As you see more things, you can identify what it is you're looking for and what you don't like. Through iteration and exploration you'll find the right design.
Here are the core principles you're looking for in a great logo:
Make it original:
Great logos stand out. Using fonts that are less known or custom gives your logo individuality. Find graphic shapes that are different from the crowd.
Make it memorable:
Can someone draw your logo from memory? Great logos have an elegance and originality that is memorable. People doodle them, know them and recognize them. The more memorable the logo, the more rich sensations people will feel when they see it.
Make it fresh:
We are in 2015, so come on! Let's make logos that are fun. Just as we constantly re-invent fashion, we constantly re-invent graphic design. Try different illustration styles from different eras and artists. Play with colors, play with drama and motion.
Keep it simple:
A logo should be the minimum necessary graphic elements to express the concepts you want. Less is more. Keep names short. Simpler names and logos are easier to remember.
Make it expressive:
A logo has to trigger emotions in the recipient. Without emotional engagement a logo won't be remembered.
The next step
You're hopefully now ready to take the next steps towards creating your logo. The next step may be to better define your brand, or you could be ready to start the visual design process. If you'd like some design help, then try SketchDeck!
This guest post was written by Gabriel Lendner, one of our talented design team
Get more of our original articles on how to level up your marketing and design: