Having the right logo is an essential part of creating your business's image. Potential customers will immediately form impressions about your brand based on the colors and design you select, even before they read your catchy tagline.
Find out what your logo design says about your business and what role it plays in brand awareness, brand recognition, and brand loyalty.
Why do logos matter?
Designer and business coach Elizabeth Pampalone explains that the first few seconds of a visual have a strong impact. "At the moment we look at [a logo], we decide whether we're attracted to it or not, whether we feel something about it or not," she says. The potential customer won't even know exactly why they feel the way they do or why they're left without a feeling of connection. They'll just know what feels right for them.
That feeling is the power behind the design that you want to harness because a good feeling means that you will get business. A negative feeling, on the other hand, means no business at all, and a lack of feeling means that the person could go either way.
What's the most important thing in a logo design?
Before your designer even draws a line, they're going to talk to you about color. According to Pampalone, there's a whole psychology behind color. When you think of a spa, soft blues and greens come to mind, not reds and yellows. That's because soft blues and greens are soothing, while reds and yellows are exciting and energizing. If you think of a cybersecurity business, it's likely that you'll think of deep blues and blacks because those are the colors of trust and authority. If, on the other hand, you see colors out of context, they can evoke the wrong feeling.
To decide what colors you should choose, you first have to be clear on "who" your business is. You need to be clear on your audience. Clear on the feeling that you want your design to evoke. The only way to do that is to figure out your corporate personality.
"Rather than defining your 'who' as a CPA business that also does volunteer work," Pampalone says, "get more specific and describe your 'who' as being a CPA firm that works with people to let them know the government is not out to get them with their taxes." This way, you're blending the business identity (your "why") with your logo philosophy (your "who").
How to build brand recognition
Once you have your logo, you want to build your brand identity, which is comprised of the tangible elements put together by a designer meant to influence the perception of a brand. It can include the logo, fonts, colors, photography style, icons, and any other supporting assets to help communicate the brand message.
"The most important thing about brand identity," Pampalone says, "is consistency." Your brand needs to be on everything—your website, social media accounts, business cards, name tags, letterhead, envelopes. Everything. And it needs to be consistent. Use the same icon, fonts, style, whether your brand is on the bottom of a lecture slide in black and white or on the corporate Easter card. Don't fall into the trap of changing up colors for the season. Instead of changing your colors for Easter, create little eggs with your colors.
"People often derail themselves by using something they think is simple or cute," says Pampalone, "but without your colors, your brand doesn't convey your thoughts or the feeling you worked so hard to evoke."
Build brand loyalty
Ensure your consistency by trademarking your logo. This will guarantee that no one else in the country can use any part of what you worked so hard to create. With consistent use of your brand, you will build brand recognition and brand loyalty.
You may even get to the point where all you'll need to display is your icon, and people will know who you are, what you're all about, and what great service you will give. Think of Target. Think of Apple. Their stores no longer need to show their names, merely the red and white bulls-eye and an apple with a bite taken out of it. People know what stores they're going into. They know what kind of products and services to expect. People can get to know you that way, too.
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