A logo is ‘an opportunity to really clarify your vision for your business and give it a visual form’ (Entrepreneur Europe, 2020). Developing a logo for your brand or organisation can be an overwhelming task; ensuring that the design encompasses your brand identity whilst being unique and memorable can sometimes feel like an unachievable goal. At HdK, we recognise the importance of creating a logo which has relevance and purpose. That’s why our team have developed a thorough process that breaks down the task of creating a logo into manageable and thoughtful stages. Before exploring how you can break down your approach to developing a logo, it’s important to establish what key attributes need to be considered in your design.
What makes a powerful logo?
A logo is a visual representation of your brand, so it goes without saying that a logo should be aesthetically pleasing. Studies suggest that simple designs are often preferred by audiences (Workspace, 2020). With this in mind, a logo should adopt a clear and clean aesthetic that is adaptable and can be scaled for different purposes without ruining the design. For instance, the Adidas logo is an example of a clear and fuss-free image that can be scaled down and re-worked on clothing as the three stripes. Unlike fine art displayed in galleries and museums, logos do not have an audience’s attention for a prolonged period of time. In this way, a clear and simple aesthetic ensures that your brand and personality is conveyed efficiently and effectively to audiences.
Another key aspect to consider when developing a logo is relevance. Although logos do offer an opportunity to explore your brand in a creative and abstract way, the final product should still link to your company’s purpose or industry. For instance, Twitter’s logo is a perfect example of an abstract and creative idea that still has relevance to the brand, product and industry. Although Twitter is not linked to birds in a literal sense, the use of this animal as a symbol is reflective of the brand and the social media platforms that encourages interaction, conversation and dialogue.
Ultimately logos are another way to reach and connect with audiences, therefore you want to ensure yours has an impact. If audiences can remember and recognise your logo, it helps your brand remain present in their minds (TailorBrands, 2020). Creating a memorable logo requires both elements mentioned above, to develop a logo that is easily comprehensible, clear, relevant and visually engaging.
Ultimately, when exploring effective logos and branding the three elements above always stand out as key attributes to a powerful design. However, achieving this can be tricky, which is why we have developed a thoughtful and refined approach of creating and designing logos at HdK.
When creating and designing logos for clients, we have developed a process that enables us to ensure that we cover the main elements of creating an eye-catching logo.
First of all, we obtain a brief from the client. This will cover the main background behind the expectations of the logo and what they are looking to encapsulate in this visual representation of their company. In their brief, the following questions should be addressed:
- Who is the company?
- What are their services or products?
- What are their overall aims?
- Why do they need a logo?
- Where are they looking to use the logo?
- Are they rebranding? If so, why and what are the objectives of the rebranding?
- Who are their audiences?
The brief provides more clarity on the project, helping us to understand the company and comprehend what they are aiming to achieve through the new logo design.
Next, we will discuss the brief with the client. This enables us to understand the brief fully and ask for any clarification or context behind certain points. During this stage we also request a mood board from the client. This can come in any form, such as links, magazine cuttings or PowerPoints. The mood board will show visual examples of colours, images, logos or themes that the client is looking at to inspire the concept of the new logo design. Developing a mood board is an effective tool for building the creative vision, and could be useful if you are looking to develop a new logo for your company. For instance, when we redesigned Wayne Parsons Dance Company’s logo, as they were changing their company name to Voxed, the client sent across a mood board of visuals that they liked. This mood board featured logos from other companies, film posters, album covers and typography. These visual elements were extremely useful in establishing the client’s taste and for understanding the visual look that they were trying to achieve.
In addition to the mood board, the discussion with the client can help to construct our understanding of the brief and provides the opportunity for the client to delve deeper into their ideas behind the logo and branding. For instance, through our discussions with Bath Festival Orchestra, we established that it was important for the logo to have a connection to Bath. This was then transferred to the logo design by linking to Bath’s Roman legacy through the golden ratio motif carved in the circle mark. Our research showed that many composers such as Mozart, Beethoven and Bartok used the golden mean (also known as the Fibonacci sequence) to compose measure of music and structure their compositions. Therefore, this was a perfect way to relate, not only to the city, but also to classical music.
Concept ideas and design options
After discussing the brief, we can develop a variety of concepts that address the ideas and thoughts suggested by the client. We provide a variety of logo options to the client, so that they can see how their brief can be attributed to a visual concept in different ways.
Once the clients have been able to look through the selection of logos developed, we gain their feedback and comments. If nothing is suitable, we look back at the brief and mood board and start to build out new concepts. However, if a client prefers certain options, we can either look to combine certain elements of their favourite designs or tweak designs using their feedback. As we become closer to selecting a preferred logo design, we create graphics that show the logo in real life situations, whether that be on a piece of merchandise, sign, poster or building. This enables the client to visualise how the logo will fit into their company and branding.
Finally, once the logo has been signed off by the client, we provide a logo pack. This will include different formats and versions (Jpegs, high res, low res, different colours) of the logo design, so that the client can start to use the new visual across their company’s assets.
Through our logo design process, we can ensure that we have created a thoughtful and relevant logo that suits our client’s brief and company branding. If you are interested in seeing how we could help you develop a new logo concept, please get in touch here.