10 Tips to Design a Successful Logo

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Designing a logo might seem like a small and simple task, right? For a professional graphic designer, the answer might be yes, but there are a few guidelines every designer should keep in mind to make sure their design is a success. Here are some tips that will help you create a logo design that really rocks.

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1. DEFINE YOUR AUDIENCE

The first thing to do after receiving a creative brief from a client is to think about the audience. You should have a good understanding of the company’s business, products, customers, and competitors. Be open and ask your client specific questions, such as who their target market is and what they want their logo to convey about their brand.

2. GET INSPIRED

Do online research and learn from others, but avoid falling in love with someone else’s design; you could find yourself creating a logo that’s too similar. Don’t feel limited to get inspiration only from logo designs. Explore other forms of imagery, such as icons, Japanese family crests, or typography.

3. Collaborate with your client

Many clients will already have ideas about what they’re looking for. Be flexible, listen to their ideas, advise them, and offer solutions in a way that takes their feedback into account. It’s a balance of listening to what the client wants and landing on a successful design.

4. Always start with a pencil

Sketching is a much faster way to produce initial ideas before you even touch your computer. It doesn’t matter if it’s complete or not, just do things step-by-step and put your ideas onto paper. Check out this video for inspiration.

5. Avoid clichés

Graphic design is sometimes like fashion. Try to avoid things that will not have a long lifespan. Be smart and unique and don’t imitate the current trends.

6. Color makes the masterpiece

If you don’t already have a color palette to work with from the client’s brand guidelines, you’ll want to explore colors that can go beyond just the logo and encapsulate the entire brand. It’s a good idea to take time to learn more about the meanings of colors. You can find a lot of articles online that talk about the science of colors.

7. Choose your typeface carefully

If you’re choosing a new font that’s not in the brand guidelines, avoid using gimmicky fonts; they’re not going to make your logo stand out. Instead, use fonts that match the brand, and remember, don’t make it too fashionable because it could get dated quickly.

8. Take care of balance and proportions

It’s very important that your logo reflects harmony and balance. All text and logo elements must be readable even in the minimum size version. Test your logo to make sure it looks good and works in all sizes. Use graceful degradation to modify your logo if necessary to display correctly in smaller sizes. Also, check to see how the logo looks in one color, as well as a black and white version. It’s also a good idea to create guidelines that specify which logo works best for various types of placements.

9. Get feedback from others

Before showing your design to the client, try to get feedback from your friends or other designers. Sites like Dribbble let you get feedback from the design community. You’ve spent a lot of time working on the logo and outside opinions can be very helpful.

10.Use mockups to showcase your work

This is it; you’re ready to send your work to your client. Showcase your design—and your hard work—in the best possible light. Use mockups—clients love to have a realistic preview of the final work. Here are some examples.

This story was submitted by freelance writer Hichem Boukettaya and does not constitute the views or opinions of Upwork.

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Hichem Boukettaya

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Hichem Boukettaya is a senior graphic designer. He holds a BFA in graphic design and communication from the Higher Institute of Arts and Crafts of… more