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Is Your Bad Logo Design Hurting Your Company?

The controversy rages on about logo design. The two points of view are that it is a trivial point at the beginning of a business or that it is of utmost importance. It is important to ponder this issue because it will allow us to re-evaluate our company’s logo design to see if it is hurting our business. Let’s not forge that many circumstances and purposes of the business enter into the factors.

There is no getting around it bad design is bad design. There seems to be two groups who historically get involved in these types of matters. The business leaders and the graphic design artists view the project from completely different viewpoints. Ironically both of these viewpoints are needed for good design to emerge. The one who ultimately has the final say so on the logo design is the one who ordered it. A wise leader will not make the decision alone.

If you are involved in any portion of the logo selection process then you then you should realize that you have a right to speak up, especially if it is an inadequate design. As a matter of fact it is your responsibility to let your opinion.

There are three basic questions to ask about the company logo design:

Does the company logo look a lot like another logo?

This is important because you could essentially be advertising for another company if your logo looks too much like theirs. Also, this is called “Do we come off as a knock-off?” It could look like you are trying to get business from using a logo very similar to the other company’s to pull in some of their business. This is especially believable if you have a similar product or service.

This is frowned upon in the graphic design community. It is tacky at best but generally irresponsible to do this intentionally. It is like stealing or giving a false value that you did not earn through a logo you did not initially create.

It is far better to have your own distinct custom logo designed during the initial planning of your business. This will alleviate most of the difficulties that arrive during the design stage of the development of your business and avoid costly possible copyright infringements and lawsuits.

Is it Readable?

Logos need to be readable. Even if the logo is only one letter, it needs to be readable. When you add the font, the size and the color, is it still readable?

A few words of caution here, fancy and flowing font styles are not viewable by all computers and also it takes away the contrast and clarity of the logo. Some of these difficult styles can make resizing and even printing in black and white more difficult. Most graphic designers will test graphics with the black and white test.

Some people believe that standard or ‘straight’ style fonts are too traditional and not creative enough. These types of fonts are usually Helvetica or Arial. While some interpret them as uncreative, they are proven to be extremely legible. That is of utmost importance in any design or marketing tool. The exception to this is when the font is part of the recognizable logo, such as Chic Restaurants and some formal institutions.

Is it Direct?

It is important to be direct and not misrepresent your company. Be sure the logo is discussed with more people than the few who came up with the idea. It needs to be clear and the message needs to understand by everyone. The business nature and the business style need to work together. This is done by the addition of a slogan on the design. Sometimes the name is not enough the logo needs a slogan.

Reviewing these three basic logo questions will give you a clear understanding about the success and longevity of your logo. While you can plan a great deal during the initial planning, it is advisable to go to the experts for a logo design that will make your business soar. If you are not going to have them design it, at least have the experts critique it for you. They will usually tell you their opinion for free.

10/11/09 - Portfolio updated

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