When I was young, Audi was an Olympian car for me with its logo resembling the five continental rings of Olympic Games. If a golden arch “M” represents world’s largest chain of hamburger fast food restaurant, then the same alphabet in “MTV” together stands for Music Television, an American cable television company. A logo is the representation of an organization as a graphic mark or emblem for instant public recognition. It’s like giving an identity, a name, a face to an organization, just like a “+” sign stands for medical assistance.
Does it mean that one can just draw some graphic and use it as a logo? Certainly NO! A logo might be small but the impact it creates is both far-reaching and significant in terms of business and branding. Nothing else helps well than a good logo in enabling a company or product stand out in the market. It is an important and potent tool for marketing and branding purposes. Basically a logo has three components i.e. Wordmarks, Pictograms and a Tagline or slogan. The power of a logo is well understood still many organizations knowingly or unknowingly commit mistakes of silly as well as serious nature during logo designing. These mistakes can doom the future of your business. So just wrap your brain around the logo design process and carry a list of don’ts along so that you don’t end up tangled with a faulty logo. Here are top 10 silly mistakes that can undo all your hard work in logo design.
No two businesses can be same even if they are into same nature of trade. Every business, its ideology, vision is distinct in one way or the other. The same needs to reflect on the logo. Thus, it needs to be unique and distinct or else it will fade away among the thousands of them we see every other day. Never try to copy a logo as it is illegal and won’t serve any purpose, especially on a longer run. Every organization should have a unique logo that will become its identity in the market. Redundancy will only lead to confusion and ambiguity in the mind of the end customer.
2) Nothing suffices Simplicity
Always clinch to the golden rule, when it comes to logo design less is definitely better than more. The sole purpose of a logo is to position the brand in the mind of the consumer. One should try avoiding unnecessary components like a pictogram, company initials, strap line and so on as it will clutter the logo, thereby, making it difficult to comprehend and recall. Always remember that a clean and simple logo always has far more impact at any size. Still not convinced, just recall the most powerful brands you know. Companies like Nike, Apple, Microsoft, Coca Cola, IBM, Google, Intel, General Electric, BMW, Mercedes, Samsung, Cisco, Disney and many others have logos that are nothing more than an image or artistic expression of their names still worth billions in their marketing power.
3) Say NO to Stock Images
Use of Stock Images must be a strict “NO” when it comes to logo design. It makes your logo look cheap, unauthentic and loosens your guard against copyright issues and redundancy. Images from stock photography websites are royalty-free photographs or illustrations available over the internet. Always go for a professional designer who can create a unique and original artwork with an exclusive copyright for it.
4) Don’t Put the Wrong “FONT” Forward
Choosing a proper font that syncs well with logo’s design and identity of the brand is of paramount importance. One must ascertain the look and feel of the font on different promotional media. For example a cursive script appears like a spider trail on mobile screen. In case you are using a novelty font then using it across company’s marketing collaterals and brandings can become an issue. Unique and timeless, a font can speak volumes about any business.
5) Ignoring Brand Positioning
The art of logo design is littered with pitfalls and ignoring brand positioning is the most common of all. Brand positioning refers to the position a brand holds in the mind of a customer. It is the perceived image of a particular brand. The logo should be designed in correct tone that signifies the brand positioning as well as the USP of the organization.
6) Overdoing Color
Many designers live by the misconception that colorful designs look more attractive and are easier to recall. However, overdoing colors in a graphic design make it confusing and busy. Remember that a logo has to be used across different mediums and brandings. Too much use of colors makes it difficult to translate into monotone. In addition, the colors used must work well on several printed materials, websites and mobile sites. Ideally, one should keep colors in a logo under a maximum of four.
7) Using Raster Images
One must avoid using a Raster Image, an image that is made out of pixels of specific value to determine its color. The problem with Raster image is that it can’t be scaled to different sizes as per requirement. At large sizes it makes the logo unstable and incompatible. Resort to vector graphics to maintain visual consistency across distinct mediums in different sizes.
Finishing of the logo design has to be perfect. One must ensure that the curves are smooth, there is no overlapping, and symmetry is just perfect. Try to keep everything in the final design neat, flawless and minimum. Look out for the minutest details as well for in bigger prints such mistakes become apparent.
9) Too Many Concepts
Client has provided a brief, the designer has also thought of a concept so has the account management team. Now, it becomes a designer’s dilemma of which one to ignore and which to accept. Sometimes the designer tries to play with all the concepts at same time on a single logo to end up with a messed up one that is too complex to comprehend. Try to stick to a single concept and design the logo accordingly with minimal elements.
Most of the designers today slavishly follow current fashion trends to design a logo. Such logos soon become outdated and out-of-touch. Do not follow the market trends; they change over and over again with time. Try making it timeless and memorable with innovative designs and out-of-the box ideation.
Designers need to be extra vigilant about these pitfalls in order to guide their logo designs to glory and fame.