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Logo Design Do’s and Don’ts

 In Branding

Logo Design Do’s and Don’ts

Important Things to consider when designing a Logo and Brand Identity Concept.


When you are designing a logo, or getting a logo designed for you, it can be really hard to tell whether any given design is good or not. A logo that looks totally fantastic to you may not resonate with your audience at all. You may have a logo design that you thinks innovative and edgy, and when your customers see it they may be totally turned off because they can’t even tell what industry your company is supposed to be in.

Your logo and Brand Identity Graphic Design tells your customers who you are and what they can expect when they work with you. It only makes sense that you would need to have a logo design that gets your message across effectively. This is why it is so important to have excellent, professional logo design for your company.

Here at James Jet Black Designs, we specialize in designing the perfect logos for your business and your website. Whether you are designing your own logo or hiring someone else to do it for you, here are some of the Do’s and Don’ts of logo design that you need to look out for.

Logo Design Do’s

Do know your audience. Do your research. Who is going to buy your product, and what things do they like? Why will they buy your product? Are they buying safety or adventure? Do they want quirky individuality or polished professionalism? Are they rootless 20-somethings seeking surfing adventures (or people who want to think of themselves as such) or settled-down 40-somethings with a family, a 401k, and soccer practices on the weekends? Are they men or women? Are they stay at home parents or corporate up-and-ups? What are they looking for? What do they want to be?

When you know your audience, you can make choices that appeal to them. This affects everything from color to font to image design. If you miss the mark on color or font, your audience may turn away from your product without even knowing why. If you really hit the nail on the head, they also won’t understand why they’re choosing your product over the next one over, but they will.

Do be unique. You want to stand out from the crowd. You don’t want your logo to blend in with all your competitors’ logos. When people see your logo, you want them to know your company name and have some impression of what your company means to them.

Do research your industry’s image. You don’t want to blend in, but you do want to fit in. If you have a funeral home and you choose balloons as your logo and Courier New as your typeface, you will definitely stand out from the crowd but not in a good way.

Do sketch on paper. A lot. Paper is cheap and pens are easy to use. It takes about half a second to put a line where you want it on a piece of paper; it takes about ten seconds to accomplish the same thing in Adobe Illustrator. Get your concepts down on paper before you start designing on the computer. Fill up lots of sheets with completely different ideas, and don’t throw any of them away. You never know when you will come back to one you thought was no good at first.

Do keep the design simple. It needs to scale up and down easily. You don’t want it to turn into a blob when you make it thumbnail size.

Do make different iterations that can be used in different contexts. You may want to take just a small portion of the entire logo and redesign it to make an alternative logo that is easier to use for small size applications. Think of how the logo that is used on a smartphone app is usually different from the company logo. It is best to design multiple iterations of your logo while creating the logo in the first place to ensure a unified vision.

Do use a max of two fonts. More than that becomes visually distracting and confusing.

Do have a plan for how the logo will be used in all the applications where it will be placed. What fonts and colors go with it? How much space do you leave around it? How large should the logo be on a printout or publication? What about if you are putting it on a dark background?

Logo Design Don’ts

Don’t follow the trends. Unless you want an utterly forgettable logo that blends in with all the other companies. Even if there is a design trend that you really happen to like, don’t use it.

Don’t be married to the literal interpretation of your company. Just because something is the most obvious image of your company, that does not mean that you have to use it. If you have a yarn store, you are not actually required to have your logo be a ball of yarn with two needles sticking through it.

Don’t imitate another logo. Not only can this land you in legal trouble, but it completely defeats the purpose of having a logo at all. A logo is supposed to set you apart, not make customers wonder if you are actually a different company.

Don’t flip flop. Invest in a really good logo design and then stick with it for a while. Don’t change it up every year or two. Customers take a while to get used to a new logo and build brand recognition around it.

Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water. If you’re rebranding, that doesn’t mean you automatically need to toss out your entire color palette. You may be able to keep some of the colors and add in a few new ones to make things fresh. Similarly with the logo itself, you don’t necessarily need to completely scrap the old logo. Think of how Starbucks simplified their mermaid to create a sleek, sophisticated logo without losing the iconic image they had created for themselves.

James Jet Black
Who are we? James Jet Black Designs is a talented, knowledgeable team of brand identity graphic design experts whose favorite thing is creating gorgeous images and on-point designs to help YOUR business grow.

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