What does your company’s logo say about you? Of course, it is possible that it doesn’t really reveal that much, in which case, it’s not particularly efficient as a logo isn’t it? Still, there’s something far worse. Some logos are so poorly designed that they send the wrong message or even directly scare your customers away. The reason behind this is the fact that they were made by someone with little or no understanding of the psychology that goes into logo designing process. Here are several things you need to know in order to avoid the same fate.
Psychology That Goes into Logo Designing Process
1. Symbolism and simplicity
The first issue worth addressing here is the one of symbolism. Namely, unless your brand is already a household name, your audience will start looking for clues about you as soon as they encounter you. Therefore, you need a logo that’s symbolic of what you do. For instance, as a healthcare organization, you want to use a cross, a heart, a Band-Aid, an injection, a thermometer or a Rod of Asclepius as a symbol. In this way, your audience doesn’t even have to look up the ‘about us’ section in order to figure out your industry.
The problem with most common symbols, nonetheless, lies in the fact that everyone is already using them. This means that in order to stay unique, you have to use variations or alterations. This might lead you astray, seeing as how an effort to stand out might push you towards changing so much that your logo becomes abstract or outright confusing. This creates a completely different problem, seeing as how it might frustrate your audience upon their failure to discern it.
Yet another issue with complex symbols lies in one’s inability to verbalize it. If they can’t describe your logo with words (at least easily), you might find it harder to gain word of mouth recommendations. In fact, a failure to verbalize the predominant element of the logo might lead to failure to remember the logo later on entirely. This might not be so horrible for brand recognition but it might make your brand awareness a bit more difficult in the long run.
2. Color inspires emotion
Colors also have their symbolism; a red cross symbolizes a health organization while a white or a black one more likely stand for a religious organization. Nevertheless, this is not the main role of a color. In its essence, a color is there to inspire a certain emotion. For instance, black stands for power or sophistication, white stands for hope and purity while red is the color of love, passion or danger. Depending on the emotion you’re trying to evoke, you get to choose a color from the specter. Moreover, blue is the color of tranquility, yellow symbolizes intellect and warmth, while green is the color of luck, nature, and growth.
The tricky part about a certain color is the fact that you get to choose whether to use it on its own or in a certain combination. With a combination, you’ll have an easier job at being unique, however, it is quite possible to send contradictory, even confusing signals. Therefore, it might be cleaner, simpler and more transparent to simply pick a color and stick to it. In this way, you are solving not only the issue of the color of your logo but also the main color of your entire brand. We’re talking about the uniforms of your staff, the product packages (like with Coca-Cola or McDonald’s) and much, much more.
3. The psychology of shape
Another thing you should understand is that different shapes also make us perceive things differently. For instance, sports gear brands like Nike or Adidas have sharp logos, which sends a message of aerodynamic and efficient shape. Needless to say, this makes sense in the fitness world, however, it is not something that you see often in the world of the food industry. Here, people are more content with curves, and McDonald’s (although monogram) is a perfect example of how this works.
Needless to say, when going with symbols, this might not be as relevant but when designing an abstract logo, it might be something to look out for. The problem with these rules is that they can sometimes be so overwhelming and in order to tackle them, you need to find someone skilled and experienced enough in logo design services.
4. People don’t actually read
While words and letters may be crucial to some logos, there are situations in which you need to rethink about your need to include a word into your logo design. Monograms and initials serve as outstanding logos, provided that the idea isn’t already taken within your industry but what about words or even full sentences? Sure, someone closely examining your logo may be able to read and understand the message but most people won’t really bother. Therefore, sticking to an image or a notion is much better. If you have to use words, try sticking with something short, simple and memorable. Moreover, avoid words that have a potential for a spelling mistake (double letter word or those with a hyphen).
5. Watch out for something unintentionally inappropriate
When combining seemingly simple shapes and symbols, it’s completely possible that you make an inappropriate or a misleading shape. For you, this might slip unnoticed since you already know what the logo is about to represent, yet, don’t expect everyone else to be as oblivious. In order to ensure this is not the case, try bringing in several different outsiders (belonging to different demographic groups) and ask them what they think about it. Sometimes, it’s not just a lack of perspective but a generational or a culture gap that stands in your way.
As you can see, the principles of proper logo design aren’t many but they are all equally vital to the success of the design process. Ignoring them is a business practice that is bound to return to haunt you in the future. Nevertheless, with a bit of research, some testing and the right counsel on your side, you have nothing to fear.