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TIPS FOR SMALL BUSINESSES

What Does Your Logo Say About You? INSIGHT ONE

My logo says “I am deliberate and purposeful”.

In business, our actions must be deliberate and well thought out. Whether it is to create awareness, make money, foster relationships or simply reward customers, every action requires some thought before being executed. Actions a business makes are also open to public fanfare or scrutiny. Therefore, it is important that the overall image of a business matches its overall purpose and is created with deliberation.

How to convey that in a logo is no small task. If a logo looks rushed or falls short of considering the details people will wonder if that’s how that business operates. If a business’s logo is a bit messy, the letter spacing is slightly off, it’s a little pixelated, there are weird looking letterforms or the icon/symbol is a bit difficult to decipher, people will wonder if that’s an indication of the attention to detail a customer can expect from that business. It is easy to venture down this path of “good enough” to save on time and cost. However, creating a quick logo and calling it a day is somewhat of a “false start” because re-designing a logo after it has been printed onto merchandise, signage, business cards, products, letterheads etc.. is a costly endeavour that shouldn’t have to happen if the logo is done right the first time.

Being deliberate in all aspects of your logo and trying to keep it clean and simple is not as easy as it seems. However, it is of utmost importance in assuring that nothing is misconstrued. This means spending time with your logo and making decisions based on how clear and sharp it looks up-close and from a distance. Making sure that your logo is a scalable vector file is one way to achieve this (files such as an .eps, .svg or .ai). Keeping a logo clean and simple also means assuring that your logo doesn’t look like something unintended. Clarity in design should eliminate any missteps in visual double entendre. Just take a look at the logos that pop up after typing “worst logo designs” in a web browser and you can see just how something that might have been created with good intentions could go horribly wrong. There is such a thing as being “too close” to a project, whereby you no longer see the faults in your design. Taking a step back and looking at your logo from multiple angles can help you regain perspective. Getting someone you trust to look it over and give honest feedback could also help. The important thing is not to leave anything in logo design to chance.

Demographics with specific needs may respond better to businesses that speak directly to them and understand them.

Considering your audience and their affinity to certain things such as typefaces, colours, and letterforms will save you from alienating the people you are trying to reach. Your audience might be predominantly online which generally means they read sans-serif fonts on a regular basis. It also means they are accustomed to seeing things with higher contrast which means the use of bolder colours might work well in your logo. Demographics with specific needs may respond better to businesses that speak directly to them and understand them. For example, if you had a business that was designing a special software that helped people with vision challenges you would want to make sure your logo was well-spaced, a bit larger and had a great amount of contrast. You would make sure nothing in your logo was too abstract and that no unique letterforms were used. You would also make sure to use a monochromatic colour palette with very few tints or shades, possibly a one colour logo that passes the test of an online colour contrast checker. (You’d also want to make sure you adhere to good accessibility design practices beyond your logo, but for the sake of this article I am only going to focus on the logo). By taking the time to think about where your logo is going to be seen, who is going to see it and in which media it will be seen from the beginning, you are able to make some deliberate and purposeful design decisions that should give your business the identifier it deserves. This means considering things aside from personal preference and making some decisions based on research and fact.

Knowing your audience demographic and catering to their specific needs and interests in designing a logo shows how deliberate and purposeful you are in business. Although most people will not take notice of some of the best design, poor design is off-putting and easy to spot. Carefully executed design is another way of showing just how much you care about your customers and the success of your business.

What does your logo say about you? Insight TWO: My logo says “I know what I’m doing”