YOUR LOGO: The Core of Your Branding
Design plays a powerful role in business.
It gives life and meaning to your mission and drives perceptions of your value. Because perceptions are tied to emotion, they strongly influence purchasing decisions. So it is important to actively manage perceptions because they impact your success. Brands must create positive feelings about a company’s value and mission. Your logo is the visual key to accomplishing this.
Fundamentally, a logo is a tool.
It represents your company in many settings, and helps drive favorable market buy-in. It is the cornerstone of all of your organization’s marketing and communications.
Important to Know: The Difference between Logos, Identities & Brands
These terms are often used interchangeably, causing confusion about their place in marketing. They have different purposes and relate to each other in this hierarchy:
- A logo is a symbol, a wordmark or a combination of the two that represents an entity visually. It should be used as consistently as possible to reinforce immediate recognition (think McDonald’s Arches or the Nike “swoosh”).
- An identity is how the logo is deployed on an organization’s materials to create continuity among all the marketing and communications of the organization. Consistent application reinforces familiarity with the organization and builds trust.
- A brand is the set of promises that your organization makes to its customers. It is conveyed anywhere the public has contact with your organization. All the impressions that accrue from those interactions add up to your brand. It exists in the minds of your audience and functions as your reputation.
The logo design process starts with establishing a direction to guide design development. At the beginning, you will be asked for two “homework” assignments:
- Gather samples of marketing and communications materials from entities similar to yours in both print and digital media. We’ll need to understand the visual environment in which your organization’s logo will compete.
- Gather print and web examples of graphic design that you like, as well as examples that you dislike. Understanding your design preferences will establish the aesthetic boundaries within which the design should develop.
- Phase 1: Research – After we both review the above materials and research, we will review the mission and purpose of your company, its goals and audience, any obstacles to its mission, how your audience should be engaged, how to position the company, how the logo will be used, and any other questions with a bearing on the logo’s design.
- Phase 2: Creative Brief – When the research phase is complete, the results will be distilled into a Creative Brief. This summarizes findings fro Step 1 and guides design development. It must be approved by you to proceed to the next step.
- Phase 3: Design Concepts – After the Creative Brief has been approved, several preliminary concepts of possible logo designs will be created and presented at a meeting.
- Phase 4: Concepts Review – The concepts will be reviewed and discussed, and up to three will be selected for further development.
When the client is a group or a board, Saxon Creative recommends that a smaller sub-committee be designated and authorized to develop the project, go to meetings, evaluate the designs, and report back to the larger group.
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