What Makes a Great Logo

We live in the era of startups in which creative and freethinking individuals come up some of the greatest ideas and make a living out of them every day. However, it’s not hard to see why this trend has emerged. Being your own boss gives you a sense of satisfaction and freedom that you can’t generally expect from a 9-to-5 job. But does that mean that running a business is easy? Of course not.

Then how come there are always new stories about startups that started from zero and became multi-billion dollar businesses in just a few years? Well, the answer lies in “branding”.

The significance of Branding in the Age of the Internet

It’s good to see that the intellectual minds of this generation aren’t afraid of taking risks. They strive for greatness and do good for society by using advanced technologies that solve everyday problems. However, this has led to a new problem for them, which is competition. Starting an online business has become so much easier today, that even a school-goer can do it if he is committed and willing to do the work. With thousands of new startups launching on a daily basis, the competition is only increasing. Thus, the need for powerful branding has become more important than ever. And since a company logo is one of the main elements of a brand, we will look into the factors that make a great logo “great”.

When you are designing a logo, your ultimate goal should be a product that encompasses these 5 key characteristics:

  1. Relevance

No matter what logo design you pick, you must ensure that it’s relevant to your business. Just any logo design that looks decent won’t make it. You need something that matters to your business and symbolizes your core values and features that sets your business apart.

To take an example, if yours is a food business then you want to use bright and colorful designs with appropriate icons (pizza for a pizzeria, coffee cup for a cafeteria, etc.). In the same way, if you run an auto repair shop, then you can use a logo that has a car or spanner as icons, etc. However, you should try to avoid taking a too “literal” approach as some of the best logo designs don’t exactly represent what a company does. Examples include NBC, Apple, Adidas, etc. So, feel free to take inspiration from some of the best logo templates that you can find, but in the end, think out of the box to create designs that are unique and creative.

  1. Simplicity

A lot of people think that their logo should look grand and ornamented. However, the truth is that the simpler is your design, the more effective it really is. In fact, the Global Brand Simplicity Index says that 61% of consumers are more likely to recommend a brand because it’s simple. So, that should tell you something about simplicity in logo design.

A simple logo is easy to remember. It gets the point across quickly and doesn’t try to confuse the viewer what it’s about. Plus, it’s easy to use simple logos for different types of media including business cards, customizes objects like pens, coffee mugs, baseball caps, etc. Some top logos that prove this point include Google, FedEx, Mitsubishi, etc.

  1. Memorability

Believe it or not, our attention span is now less than of a goldfish, a study by Microsoft says. People get easily distracted these days that it’s become more difficult than ever to attract them towards your brand and convert them into paying customers. A lot of this has to do with our smartphones that are always buzzing with new notifications, messages, emails, reminders, etc. but that doesn’t change the fact that it’s affected how designs work too. For instance, it’s become really important that you create logos that aren’t just attractive but easily memorable too.

Imagine if you put your logo on billboards around your city. Will the people driving in their cars or public transport be able to remember your logo when they pass by? If your logo doesn’t have that “wow” factor, it may fail to make a long-lasting impression on your target audience. So, that’s something you want to keep in mind when you do the design work.

  1. Timelessness

A powerful and smart logo will endure the ages without a problem. It will continue to have the same impact that it has today in the next 10, 20, or 50 years as well. That’s one of the main characteristics of iconic logos, and there are plenty of great examples too.

For instance, Nike’s current logo was originally launched in 1971 i.e. nearly 5 decades ago. Granted, it did go through some changes in the actual design over time, but the main concept i.e. the “swoosh” has always been the same.  So, when you design your logo, ask yourself, will this look good even after a couple of decades? Until you get the answer in affirmative, keep on experimenting with different designs.

  1. Versatility

When you have created the perfect logo that ticks all the boxes, you want it to use it on all kinds of applications and mediums. This means that it should be versatile and scalable, and it’s one of the reasons why professional graphic designers create logos in vector format.

If you don’t know if your logo is versatile or not, then you can check for two main features- it should look as good as on a business card as on a large billboard, and its impact shouldn’t be affected even when printed in greyscale.

So, there you have it! The 5 main qualities of a good logo. Be sure to keep these points in mind when you design yours. Also, take your time and revise the logo as many times as necessary. After all, you don’t create a brand every day.

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