5 Important Elements When Designing A Logo

Logos are ingrained in our minds much more than we may think. Most people could be presented with the logos of top brands like Nike, Apple, FedEx and many others, and know immediately what they are. So to say that logos are important for building a successful brand is a bit of an understatement. A great logo sets the tone for your company. Yet more importantly, it helps you create that all important brand, what your company is all about; the culture, attitude, and everything else that makes a business unique.

As a graphic designer, you need to understand that. When a company comes to you looking for a logo for their business, they are actually asking you to help them create their brand. You want to create a strong logo that will help a company build their ideal brand that will last them for years. To help you do that, below are 5 elements you should remember when designing a logo.

1) Keep It Simple

One thing all great logos have in common is that they are simple. Think about Nike and you think about the swoosh. Think about Apple and you will, of course, think about the famous apple with a section cut out of it. You want it to be easily recognizable and easy to remember for someone that perhaps just sees the logo for a split second.

2) Memorable

This may seem a little harder to create but you want to create a logo that is easily remembered by people that see it. Think of McDonald’s and the golden arches or Starbucks and the Greek siren that is part of their logo. You want people to be able to recognize the logo easily and yet still stand out from other logos out there.

3) Timeless

Businesses want a logo that will last for years, perhaps even decades, so you don’t want to design a logo that is too trendy and will be out of style in a few years. Go with timeless design elements. A great example would be A&W Root Beer, as their logo hasn’t changed in more than 40 years.

4) Target Audience In Mind

When designing a great logo, it should also be created to reach the target audience of the company. If it’s a logo for an upscale clothing line, you would not want to create a logo like Toys r Us. It’s not representing what the brand is all about. One is trying to portray elegance and fashion, while the other is saying this is the best place in the world for kids.

5) Keep It Versatile

You want a logo to be all the things listed above while also being versatile in the way they can be used. This means that all the elements would still be recognizable even if the colors were inverted or changed a bit. A great example again of this is the Nike swoosh, it wouldn’t matter if the swoosh was white, red, or blue, as you would still recognize what brand it’s representing.

 

4 Business Card Trends That You Should Know

Business cards are still one of the best ways to showcase your name and/or company, but the days of just having a simple white business card with your information on it and that being enough are long gone. In this day and age, you want to stand out from the crowd, and one of the best ways to do that is through a unique business card: something that portrays what your brand is all about. And let me be clear – whether you are representing a person or company, you are always presenting your brand.

I get many people that come to me wanting business cards and I like to be able to create a unique design for them that will help elevate their brand to the next level. There are 4 business card design trends that you should be aware of that will help you design unique and effective business card designs that will have your clients jumping for joy and giving you referrals all over town.

1) Think Vertical

Traditional business cards are horizontal and are roughly 2”x3.” Just because that’s what has always been done doesn’t mean that’s how it always has to be. A great way to stand out is to simply make the business card vertical. This conveys a unique perspective and stands out from other business cards out there just by the way the text is on the card.

2) Be Double-Sided

Instead of just designing business cards with one side of print on them, utilize both sides of the business card. A great way to do that is to use one side to showcase the information needed, things like name, number, etc, and the backside to display the brand in a vivid and imaginative way.

3) Use Unique Sizes

Traditional business cards are 2”x3,” which means that buisness cards can get lost in the shuffle when someone has many on their desk or in a pile. One way to stand out is to simply design business cards that are larger than the traditional sizes. By doing this, the card that is thrown into a pile will always stand out because it’ll stick out and will draw the eye of the person who has it.

4) Unique Materials

If the ultimate goal of the business and or business card is to stand out from the crowd in a crowded industry, then a great way to do that is to create business cards that are printed onto unique materials other than just paper cardstock. You can get very inventive with this as I’ve seen business cards that are metal, clear plastic, very thick cardstock and even made to resemble a credit card. This does make the cost of the business cards go up, but if you’re working with a company that is really trying to stand out and present themselves as a top line company, then this is a great way to stand out and create a great first impression. This method works great with the 3rd trend in this article, which is to also use unique sizes of business cards with different printing materials.

The Mobile Revolution Is Here

For years, we have been hearing about how the internet is being used more and more by mobile users on devices like smartphones or tablets. We’ve been told how it’s increasing more and more and how by the year (insert some future date), the majority of users will access the internet via a mobile device. Well, I’m here to tell you that the mobile revolution is here. It’s already upon us.

New data shows us that mobile users account for 40% of the internet traffic out there… yes, you read that right, 40%. That is almost half of all internet traffic. If the trend continues, it will eventually be more than half of all internet users will be accessing the web from a mobile device. So if you aren’t designing websites with mobile users in mind, then you are sorely missing a huge segment of the market by not doing so.

I’m shocked by how many websites I come across still that are not equipped to be viewed on a mobile device. There really is no excuse for this as it’s easier than ever to make any website responsive. If you are unfamiliar with what responsive web design means, it’s just when the way the site is displayed is dependent on the size of the screen it’s being viewed on. If you are an experienced web, then every website you design will have some element of mobile responsiveness to it.

The fact that we have increased web traffic coming from mobile devices is a big thing, but you may be asking, “What are they doing on their mobile devices?” If they are just surfing the web and browsing but not buying things, then that may not be something you are ultimately concerned about if you design ecommerce sites. But alas, we also know that people are not only using the web from their mobile devices more and more, but they are also buying things online from their mobile devices at an increased tick of about 30%.

So we know that people are using the web more from mobile devices and buying things from their mobile devices. This means the mobile revolution you’ve been hearing about is upon us folks. This also means you should start shifting your design strategies from the big screen to the small screen. This means you want to keep content short and to the point because we know that people, in general, have short attention spans. So once you have their attention, you better make the most of it. You can do this along with short and simple content, but also with the use of images that are optimized for mobile devices, sites that load quickly on mobile devices, the use of icons is more important than ever.

If you implement all these design elements going forward into 2015, you will be well on your way to being ahead of the curve and standing out from other web designers out there. Staying trendy and current is vital for making your site appeal to users.