The Business of Branding: Logo Design Tips & Trends

Your logo speaks volumes about your company, from who you are to what you do, and is arguably one of the most defining elements of your brand. It’s extremely important when developing your brand identity that you design your logo to accurately represent your brand. In the world of design, trends are ever evolving, but there are also many constants you’ll see in strong, successful logos. So today we’ll give you our tips for designing your company’s logo and share the current logo trends for inspiration.

Variation in logos is essential because it shows no two businesses are the same. While seeking inspiration from other brands and identifying elements that reflect how you want your brand to feel is helpful, your logo should be entirely your own. That being said, there are a few things strong logos all have in common.

What do GREAT logos have in common?

First of all, they’re simple. Often times we get excited when designing our logo and want to include as many different design elements as possible, but this can be distracting to potential consumers. Keep it simple by making every design decision with a clear intention. Why do you want your logo to contain three separate colors, or why do you want leaves surrounding your company’s name? If you can’t answer these questions indefinitely, you’ll know they’re unnecessary.

Secondly, powerful logos are always versatile. Keep in mind you’ll be using your logo across different mediums when you’re in the design phase. Your company’s logo should work well on both your website, social media accounts, printed business cards, or company brochures.

Your logo should also be timeless. We sometimes want to design our logo based on what’s trendy, but if your company is as successful as we all hope it will be, you don’t want to design a logo that will be out of style in 10 years.

Most importantly, your logo needs to be memorable. Be sure to design a logo that your customers will be able to easily identify. Make sure it’s unique and is a clear representation of your brand.

What are some of today’s trends in logo design?

Simplification

Over the last few years, companies like Airbnb, MasterCard and even Google have chosen to simplify their logos.  By choosing simpler fonts and color palettes, they’re able to give their logo a look that’s still easily identifiable as their brand, but is more aesthetically pleasing. Complex logos often make consumers lose focus, which is why large corporations are making their logos more clean cut and memorable.

Texture

By adding certain textures to a logo, companies are able to let their brand speak without really say anything at all. There’s an endless number of different textures to add to your logo to make it feel different ways. For example, some companies add texture to their logos to give their brand a rustic or vintage feel.

Geometric Shapes

For years geometry has been used in logos, but the way designers are using it these days is what’s so unique. Whether the logo is made completely of geometry or is the company’s icon, brands are speaking through geometric shapes. If you choose to go this route with your brand, be sure your design makes sense for your brand.

Hand-Sketched Logos

Hand-drawn logos are popular for smaller or more artistic brands. While they’re generally harder to translate to computers than a digital design, they humanize brands, which is extremely important to today’s consumers. If you want to give your company a small-business feel, a sketched logo may be a good option for you, but be sure you make similar decisions when developing the rest of your brand strategy.

Negative Space

Negative space logos are generally used to attract attention. It also gives the brand an opportunity to build meaning within the negative space. These logos are often designed to make consumers think twice.

Cropping

Cropped logos are rooted in the idea that less is more. This approach to design argues that we don’t need to see the entirety of a letter of word to understand what it means.

Searching for more inspiration for creating a logo? You may find it helpful to view an analysis of some The Best & Worst Real Estate Logos of 2018. This article features useful examples as well as tips for making an unforgettable logo.

Designing your logo will likely be one of the most exciting times in developing your brand. Be sure not to rush through the process, hire professional assistance when necessary, and make every decision with a set intention. Once you’ve decided on a final logo for your company, be sure to keep different versions of your logo, like PSD and other vector art files, in a safe place for future promotional use. In our next “The Business of Branding” post, we’ll share ideas for affordably branding your small business!

Learn how to establish your brand voice and position here.

Author: Sarah De Nicolais

Sarah De Nicolais graduated from the University of North Florida with a Bachelors in Communication.

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