If you are a business owner or are planning to start a business and are looking forward to getting a logo created, this post is for you.
Getting a logo created for your business is as simple as hiring a design agency or a freelancer and getting it created. The tough part is getting a logo designed, that suits your purpose and getting the proper set of deliverables. As a design studio, we have seen situations where the business owner had commissioned a logo but the designer delivered only a jpeg/png logo image and no vector version. As such the logo could not be used on a bigger print banner and the business owner has to pay someone again to vectorize the logo. Or the original logo designer did not provide the logo in the required dimensions and consequently, a graphic designer has to be hired again to resize the logo for use as a social profile picture. Or the logo delivered is great but when used as a single-color rubber stamp, it is no more recognizable.
So here are a few things which as a business owner you should keep in mind when you are getting a logo designed for your brand. This will save you from recurring trips to a graphic designer and save you money and time. Also, you will get a great deal from your designer and will get a deliverable that would be sufficient for your use. This list is by no means exhaustive and it is also not necessary that each point will be true for your business type and requirement. This list is meant to give you an idea of what to look for in a logo designer.
1. Not all logo designers are created equal
Many of the requirements posted on LinkedIn or other social media mention “looking for a logo designer”. This is okay if you don’t have any specific requirements in your mind. However, it is always better to give more input so that you get the perfect match. For example, if you are looking for a mascot logo like KFC or a calligraphy logo like Coca-Cola, or a typography logo like Google you need a logo designer with a specific set of skills along with logo designing skills.
A logo designer who is good at calligraphy might not be good at illustration, and won’t be suitable for a mascot logo but can create awesome typography or calligraphy logo. So giving more details about the requirements will help you connect with a logo designer with a specific set of expertise that fits your logo style. Also never look out for a generic graphic designer when you actually need a logo designer. Not all graphic designers are logo designers and not all logo designers can create all types of graphic designs.
Pro-tip — use relevant hashtags while posting requirements on social media. For example, if you are looking for a mascot logo like KFC or Pringles, or Michelin tyres, use hashtags like #logodesigner #madcotlogo #illustrator. Most designers follow hashtags relevant to their taste and expertise.
2. Brief the designer and if possible in written format.
No, this is not from a legal point of view. The only reason to get everything written is that the memory span of an average human is short and there are chances that the designer might miss/forget a crucial requirement and the design will require rework and additional time. A written format will allow the designer to refer to the list when making a design decision. Also, make sure you provide the designer with as much information as possible about your requirement. Most importantly don’t forget to mention the DON’Ts. If there is anything specific you don’t want in your logo, mention it.
Pto-tip. It is more important to specify the donts. This would save you many revisions and time.
3. Let the designer know what you like and what you don’t before revision
It is normal to not like the version submitted by the designer. If there is anything specific you like in the design or anything specific you don’t like — let your designer know. This will give the logo designer an idea as to exactly which part of the design he/she needs to work on or come up with variations.
Pro-tip. Although it’s a great idea to let the designer know what you like and what you don’t, back-seat-driving should be avoided.
4. Share sample logos
It is always a great idea to share with your designer a list of logos you like and a list of logos you don’t. These can be famous logos or sample logos. The purpose is to give the designer an idea of your taste. Although this would take up a chunk of your valuable time, it would definitely save you loads of time, effort, and money in revisions later.
Pro-tip: Share the logos of your competitors so that the designer gets to know the benchmark.
This is probably the most important part and most neglected one too. Normally business owners are not much conversant with the design industry or with tech or social aspects of marketing. As such often the business owners would find that the logo format delivered doesn’t fit in the technical requirements of the brand website or social media dimensions, or legal/procedural specifications. So make sure you get the logo in multiple formats, dimensions, and backgrounds. Also, make sure you get the vector format of the logo. Vector formats can be stretched to any size without losing quality. In many cases, the brand owners ask for a ‘high-resolution’ logo. But this is not enough. You actually need a vector logo.
Additionally, ask for a single-color version of the logo. This is needed for various purposes like rubber stamps, embossing, and watermark. Some logos can be easily converted to single color while others might need to be reworked completely. So to save time and money, ask your logo designer to provide you with a single color vector format of the logo.
Pro-tip: ask the designer to deliver the logo in pdf format. Pdf can be opened in Chrome browser. You can stretch to any size to check if it loses quality. A good logo would be comprised of vector shapes and will not lose the quality when zoomed in. You can also go for SVG format which also opens in Chrome.
Hope that was helpful. I will be posting the second part of this list later sometime. Also, keep a watch as I plan to post a detailed article on logo deliverables.