What Makes a Good Logo, Good?

I am launching a new product in the health and fitness space, I have had a few low cost resources attempt a logo but it’s not matching my brand vision. What makes a good logo good? Should I lower my standards, thanks

Answer by Connie Ozan

Please, never lower your standards.

Your identity is an extension of you and your vision for your company, product or service no matter the size. A successful logo will express the tone and personality immediately to your customers. A well-crafted logo will be technically sound and adhere to multiple platforms. Here are few rules of thumb in logo creation that we always follow. The logo or logotype should always work within these parameters:

  1. Clearly visible in color and black and white

  2. Create color options (1 color, 2 color or multi color to use digitally).

  3. Color is subjective; however, we find that keeping color usage simple (1-2) is almost more effective than over complicating.

  4. The logo should scale up and down while keeping proportions whether sizing to a social media icon or scaling up to the side of a building or truck.

  5. Creating logos with clean simple shapes is always essential. Simple shapes will make it easier to reproduce across a variety of mediums – digital, print, 3D (signage) and even wearables.

Overall, if the logo (from a low cost resource) doesn’t match your brand vision, then it’s worth the time, legwork and investment to work with a real designer or branding agency who truly understands what you are trying to achieve. As with any relationship, a skilled and educated designer or creative team will spend the time asking questions, getting to know you and creating a visual that represents your authentic truth. This isn’t something you can do with a random logo making website. The results are usually cookie cutter and your brand might look like everything else in the market. It probably won’t set you apart from your competition. Plus, you may not have the opportunity to give feedback or even ask questions. If budget is a concern, there are many levels of practicing design professionals and agencies with various rates. One suggestion would be to contact a local industry trade organization who can help you find a partner that fits your budget and needs:

  1. American Institute of Graphic ArtsAmerican Institute of Graphic Arts

  2. American Advertising FederationAmerican Advertising Federation

  3. 4A’s (American Association of Advertising Agencies)4A’s (American Association of Advertising Agencies)

Ultimately, an identity doesn’t need to be complicated, but it is a visual foundation to feel great about. As an expression of your vision, it sets the tone for all future marketing efforts – through color story, font selection, typesetting of the name and tagline, photography or illustration style (if applicable) and brand voice. From my professional experience, the initial investment in quality design will pay off for years to come.  Establishing a relationship with a talented designer or branding agency can be a true asset to your business and a person or firm who will grow with you.