Your logo is the face of your brand – it needs to instantly communicate who you are and what you stand for. But designing an effective logo is harder than it looks. Many logos fail to achieve their purpose because of some key mistakes.
We are a graphic design agency. We often assist clients with logo design and their corporate ID package. We have experienced these problems ourselves.
Don’t let your logo rush undermine the impact of this vital brand asset. Avoid these common logo creation mistakes.
Going Too Literal
Some logos try to literally depict what a company does through predictable imagery. For example, a pet store logo that’s simply a graphic of a dog or cat. The problem? This is visual cliché that customers have seen a thousand times.
Your mascot logo doesn’t need to visually explain your business. It just needs to represent your brand’s personality and values. A smart logo uses symbolic, abstract images that suggest – rather than overtly state – what you do.
Copying Other Logos
You might have a competitor with a great logo that you want to emulate. Resist the urge to copy! Changing the idea may still make people see the similarities, which makes your brand look less credible and original.
Our stationery design team once worked with a client who requested a logo styled after its top competitor. We advised strongly against this, explaining the importance of having a unique brand identity. We won’t simply copy another company’s design work. Neither should you.
Choosing Overused Concepts
Certain logo concepts and symbols are so overused they’ve become meaningless. Generic shapes like squares, circles, and triangles. Stock images of lightbulbs, globes, and handshake graphics.
These visuals lack originality and won’t make people remember your brand. When going through concept designs, pick logo marks that are imaginative and not traditional.
Not Considering Scalability
Logos appear on all kinds of applications – everything from billboards to social media profile pictures. Will your logo’s design hold up when scaled to different sizes?
Some graphics and text details look great at full size but become illegible when shrinked down. Keep scalability in mind, especially if you’ll need icon versions of your logo for mobile screens. Test how it looks when enlarged and condensed.
Skipping Proper Research
Failing to do your homework is a common misstep. Don’t move ahead without first researching your industry, competitors, and target audience. This will uncover patterns to avoid (like overused concepts) and inspiration to leverage.
It also prevents unintended blunders – like failing to realize certain images are associated with existing brands. Proper research gives you insights that inform a unique logo direction. Don’t neglect this step.
Using Too Many Design Elements
Logos are most effective when kept simple and stripped down to basic, essential elements. New designers often clutter logos with too many visual components and decoration. But all those extra “bells and whistles” compete for attention rather than focus it.
Prioritize 2-3 core graphic elements at most. For example, combine a simple icon with your business’s name in a creative font. Keep it clean.
Choosing Unreadable Fonts
Speaking of fonts – beware of stylized scripts and display typefaces that hinder legibility. Remember, your logo includes your brand name. If people can’t easily read the full business name, the logo has failed.
Carefully test font options to ensure letters are recognizable at both large and reduced sizes. Or use a mix of stylized and simpler fonts – one for the icon and another for the company name.
Your logo will need to work across many contexts – from stationery to signage to social media. Is your design versatile enough?
Logos with intricate details or complex gradients can be inflexible. Simpler flat logos have an advantage, as they’re easier to resize and recolor as needed for different contexts. Test how your logo concept adapts to various media formats.
For example, something all brands have are business cards and corporate id packages. Make sure your logo will be useful to design stationery.
Not Considering Longevity
Trendy visual styles come and go. You don’t want your logo design to end up looking dated after just a few years. Evaluate design concepts through the lens of longevity.
Opt for a classic, timeless logo style that won’t become quickly outdated. Focus on clean lines, balanced use of space, and universal symbols. These withstand fleeting fads.
Confusing Brands in the Same Industry
If your company operates in a crowded industry, you must take extra care to differentiate your brand identity. You want customers to instantly recognize your logo and not mix it up with competitors’ logos.
Do extensive competitor research during the design process. Identify what makes their logos effective, and do something noticeably distinct. Test logo concepts with focus groups to ensure your design stands apart.
Logos should retain brand recognition whether displayed as full color, black and white, or grayscale. But not all concepts meet this need.
Some logos depend heavily on specific colors. Remove them, and the impact is lost. Evaluate whether your chosen logo mark is just as effective in any color scheme. Don’t let adaptability fall by the wayside.
Skimping on Prototyping
Don’t finalize a logo concept without thoroughly prototyping it first. To simplify the language of the sentence, we can split it into several shorter coherent sentences:
This process includes creating sample designs. We then test these designs on various items used by your company. Examples of these items include business cards, websites, and packaging.
Look at your logo on every format. Do some products need squared versions of your logo? Make adjustments until it works seamlessly. This avoids problems down the road after launch.
Tryout your logo in many different settings – a postcard design, a packaging design, and in more design templates. If it looks well, it means you have find the right logo.
Great logos seem inevitable – destined to represent that brand and no other. But they don’t happen by accident. By avoiding these key mistakes during the design process, you set your logo up for maximum impact.
If you are looking to order a logo design, or need help with any brand package, you have found the right graphic design team. With over 20 years of experience, The NetMen Corp is the perfect partner for all your brand designs. For logo design services, packaging design services and more, we are ready to help.