How To Design The Perfect Logo For Your Business
So, you’ve started to work on your brand’s visual identity and are looking to design a logo for your company or organization. Any designer will tell you that the process is not as simple as it sounds. If you look at the most popular logos out there, you’ll realize that they’re easily recognizable with or without the brand name. That might make you wonder, what exactly is it about the design of a logo that creates such a powerful emotional impact and etches it in your memory? And how can you achieve a similar effect when designing the logo for your company?
We all know what a logo is. But for the sake of a definition, it is a symbol or design that identifies a company and its products/services and functions as the face of your business. Think of it as a visual representation of all that your company stands for. A professional logo design can make a powerful impact on a customer’s perception of your brand, on a conscious and unconscious level. However, a logo isn’t your brand in and of itself, nor is it your entire visual identity, which consists of a number of other elements like typography, color palette, packaging, website, etc. (Check out our blog on developing a strong and unique brand identity to learn more!)
Now that you know what a logo is and isn’t, let’s get down to the basics of actually creating one from scratch. To help you design a logo that is both unique and memorable, we have written down a step-by-step.
1. Research Your Brand
In this initial self-discovery phase, you will try to scout out as much information and understanding of your company’s beliefs, goals, and brand identity, as you can. While it’s natural that you already have a good idea of these things, writing these down all in one place will help you rediscover things about your company story, your target audiences, and your brand value, that you may have previously not considered. This will help you find the story behind the logo, before you even begin creating the logo. Don’t just think about “what” your company does, think about “why” it does what it does. Truly understanding your brand’s core personality will make selecting designs that complement that personality a lot easier.
You can also get some logo design ideas from your competitors. If you have a moodboard of all the colors, symbols, fonts, and layouts used by your competitors in their logos, you’ll have a better understanding of how you can stand out from them visually, while still conveying that you’re part of the same industry.
Finding inspiration for your design can be less daunting if you try to involve every person and every department in your brainstorming sessions. Logoed and Logospire are great places to view fresh and stunning logos and get your creative juices flowing. A fun brainstorming trick is to use a thesaurus to find as many synonyms for your brand identity/products/services that you can, and start sketching ideas that match these words. Or you can use your company name/slogan if you already have one finalized. They don’t have to be perfect and you can use previous sketches to refine and build on new ones. Remember to keep the shapes simple and avoid any popular or generic symbols that can be easily attributed to other places or quickly forgotten. Whether you’re brainstorming yourself or taking help from a top graphic design firm, creativity is key.
3. Learn To Design
A good logo should be simple, memorable, unique, versatile, and representative of your industry.
You can start by familiarizing yourself with the different types of logos:
- Wordmark - This is the most classic form of a logo, also known as a logotype. These logos simply spell out the name of the company and have no graphic symbol. They’re best for companies with short and distinct names and no slogans. For this to work, it’s really important for the typography to be legible.
- Monogram - These contain 1-3 letters, usually a company’s initials and are great for long names. Typography is just as important here but there’s more room for creative styling. E.g: LV for Louis Vuitton. However, new businesses should consider keeping the full business name under the monogram to build recognition.
- Brand mark - Also known as pictorial marks, brand marks are easily recognizable graphic symbols that have a direct connection to the company. E.g: using a tooth for a dental company.
- Combination logo - these are a combination of a wordmark and a symbol. Because they use two design elements that represent your brand, they are easily recognizable and a type of logo that is most commonly used. Different combinations of these can be used in different contexts.
- Abstract logo mark - These are less recognizable, more unique, and typically geometric. It’s wise to use these along with the company name until you’ve built considerable brand recognition.
- Mascot - Mascots can be a lot of fun if they suit your brand’s personality. They are more flexible than standard symbols since their expressions can be changed and can be used to communicate a range of emotions.
- Emblem logo - Also known as crests, emblems are texts located inside symbols. They are usually used to communicate tradition and prestige.
Logo Shapes & Layouts
Shapes also play a really important role in conveying messages and feelings to a target audience. They can be used as containers or symbols in the design of a logo. Using a shape as a container will confine your logo and make it look neat but can potentially lead to scalability issues. Some of the most common logo shapes used by Kuwait graphic design companies are:
- Circles - They signify unity, security, and protection, and are great when used with monograms.
- Squares/Rectangles - Albeit more traditional, they evoke feelings of balance and stability and are great for longer names. These shapes are really popular with large organizations.
- Triangles - Representative of strength, conflict, and speed, they can be used to convey direction and movement.
- Vertical/Horizontal Lines & Shapes - Anything explicitly vertical is associated with aggression, courage, and dominance whereas horizontal lines and shapes are used to communicate calmness and tranquility.
- Organic Shapes - These are more natural-looking and exude a sense of warmth and comfort, which cannot be fully achieved with the other shapes.
You can also add a little intrigue to your logo by playing with its layout. Try stacking it or try pairing both vertical and horizontal texts. The placement of your symbol can also change the entire look of your logo. Does it look better skewed to the side, right at the center, or incorporated into the wordmark itself? If you’re including your slogan within the logo, you might also want to test different placement options here, although it will almost always be directly below your company name.
Your logo colors will be your brand’s colors, so you should be able to visualize it on all your business assets. It has a significant impact on your audience’s perception of your company. Colors evoke a variety of feelings and emotions, so choose your palette depending on whether you want to convey luxury, quirkiness, sophistication, or some other mood or theme. We have an entire blog dedicated on how you can use color theory and psychology to define your brand, so check it out for a more comprehensive guide! As a rule of thumb, try not to include more than 3 different colors in your logo, and keep a black and white version handy to use when needed.
Just like colors, there are thousands of fonts to pick from, and each conveys something different. The easiest way to create a professional logo design is to avoid common and overused typography. Main font categories include:
- Serif fonts - These are timeless, high-end, and classic and are best suited for a mature demographic. Times New Roman is the most well-known serif font but also the most generic.
- Sans-serif fonts - These don’t have the little feet-like edges like serif fonts so they are more modern-looking, clean, and easy to read. They can be worked well across all mediums but are mostly used digitally.
- Script fonts - Handwritten/scripts fonts are everything formal, elegant, and feminine and can add so much personality to a logo. These are harder to read at first glance, but can really make your logo stand out through its authenticity and originality.
- Modern fonts - Think sans-serif but more sophisticated. They are widely used by tech companies and work well with younger audiences.
- Display fonts - These are very much out-of-the-box fonts and can add an edgy or futuristic layer to your logo.
- Custom fonts - If you’ve hired someone for logo graphic design services, they may be able to create custom fonts for you.
Now that you have a better idea about the components that go into a design, you can get to work. You have several options at this stage. You could start designing your logo from scratch if you have some preliminary design experience with software like Adobe Illustrator or Photoshop. If not, you could look online for a free/paid logo template and customize it, but this method might end up making your logo look really generic. If you want a more unique logo, you could try using online logo makers that use AI to understand your design preferences but are costlier. Finally, you could go to a professional designer or hire one of the top graphic design companies in Kuwait who can help you convey your brand’s personality through your logo more accurately.
Since the logo will represent your company on multiple platforms, ensure that it’s scalable. Whether it needs to be displayed on a billboard or screened on the side of a pen, every part of your logo should be legible.
5. Refine and Finalize
Once you’re done with the designing process, ask yourself if your logo is simple, memorable, and evocative. Other questions to ask yourself before you finalize the design:
- Is my logo scalable?
- Does it look good in black and white?
- Will it look good on all the places I will be using it (website, social media, print materials, banners, etc)?
- Do I have different logo variations for different uses?
All of these steps might seem like a lot of work for creating a simple image. But remember that this logo will be permanently linked to your brand, so it needs to be impeccable. Even if you’re a small business, you shouldn’t give up on quality design. At Design Master, one of the best graphic design companies in Kuwait, we can help you create unique and professional logo designs that truly reflect your brand identity and most importantly, make you feel confident about your company.