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Business Startup Logo Design

One of the most important rules to remember when designing your logo is to keep it simple.

Many of the biggest brands in the world such as Apple, Nike, BP, FedEx, Virgin and Coca Cola all have a simple logo that people instantly recognise.

The more complicated the logo, the less likely people are to recognise who you are – something you don’t want when you really need to be noticed!

To make your logo stand out, you may wish to use vibrant and/or contrasting colours, although this should not be the only factor that makes it recognisable.

Your logo will not always be printed in colour, e.g. in newspapers, so it must have other features in order for it to be effective.

Of course, the final design depends to some extent on your personal preferences and the nature of your business, but the concept itself should override the colour scheme.

First you need to decide whether the logo is something you have the skills to be able to do yourself.

We’re not talking about messing around with clip art here – it needs to look professional so it makes your company seem professional.

A bodge job will only make you look like an amateur, so if you know you won’t be able to do a great job of it yourself, hire a design company to do it for you.

Try looking for several small, local firms who should give you a reasonable quote. Compare their prices, and check out their portfolios of previous work.

You may find you like one better than the others, even if they are slightly more expensive.

Make use of your contacts here - do you know anyone in the design industry who could get a logo done for you at a cheaper rate than normal? Do you know anyone who knows someone else that works in a design company?

If your budget can stretch to getting a professionally designed logo, then it will be well worth it in the long run.

There are many things to think about when designing your new business logo.

Try out different font types for your company name – it should reflect what you are selling and blend in nicely with the rest of the logo design.

For example, if you are selling Art supplies, you may wish to choose a scribbled, handwritten font such as that used by Paperchase (make sure it is legible though!).

Don’t go overboard with colours either – the more you have, the more it will cost you to print. One or two should be sufficient. Again, consider the colour schemes used by well-known brands – many use no more than two colours, and many of these only use one.

You need to plan ahead too, and think about the future – will your logo look outdated in 10 or 20 years time? You want something that will always be fresh and timeless.

Allow for differences in scale – will your logo still be clear to people if it is printed fairly small on business cards or in a magazine?

Can people still read your company name? There’s no point designing a logo where the name of the company isn’t clear – people aren’t going to bother trying to read it or make it out. Think - if people don't know who you are, how will they contact you?

Look at some of the logos for famous brands known throughout the world – what makes them so recognisable?

A good exercise that you can do is to look up all of your competitors and put their logos into a single file.

Make notes on what you do and don’t like about them, and use them when coming up with your own design.

Once you have something in place, compare it to your competitor’s logos – does yours stand out from all the others?

Overall, you need to create something unique, simple, flexible and memorable – unfortunately, this isn’t going to happen overnight.

Spend as much time as you can on getting the logo design right – ask family, friends and associates for their opinion, and keep re-designing it until you are happy it meets all of the aforementioned criteria.

Try putting your logo out of sight for a week or two - if you look at it again afterwards and still like it, then run with it.

Make sure you test it out first in different formats, e.g. business card, letterhead, website, brochure, etc. before you start printing anything.

Does it look ok on everything you are going to use it for?

If you can create a logo that makes a visual impact and conveys your brand well, the chances are you will make a lasting impression and get ahead of the competition.