(Guest writer: Christopher Wallace)
Let’s talk logos. Designing a logo for your brand is not only a smart move, but it’s also an upfront investment with a lasting impact on the bottom line. With logos, though, it’s important to get it right.
It’s such an integral part of your brand that it must hit the right audience demographics, communicate simply and instantly, and be usable on any scale from a coffee cup to a billboard. I’ve seen a million logos, OK maybe not a whole million, come across my desk, and I can still point to the ones I think work and the ones that don’t.
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How do I know? I see the successful ones over and over again, maybe with a slight tweak here and there, but I know from the consistency that the company has cut through the current information overload and hit upon a strong, clear communication tool.
Here is the question business owners most often ask themselves: What does a well-designed logo, and the money I’ve spent on it, do for my bottom line? Here are the answers, after the jump.
Your logo is your calling card. Think of it as the gift that keeps on giving. Putting a name and a face on your brand cements your seriousness as an enterprise. Researching what your image is going to be and how your logo will sum it up, then spending money on a professional design imparts business respect.
People connect with a logo first, and first impressions are important to your business image. Image is a bottom-line goal for your success and longevity in business.
Some people call it mindshare. It’s a way to get inside your customers’ heads. A logo does that because when it is successful, it connects instantly. Think of your logo as a way to get your customers’ or clients’ attention without having to pitch them a thing and without them having to buy a thing – yet.
A logo doesn’t just communicate a visual image and a name, or a slogan. It communicates an idea, or philosophy by triggering emotions and mental images in your mind.
We know that mindshare works because so many companies have successfully persuaded people to think as they do with a logo – a swoosh, for example – or a slogan – “Just do it,” for example.
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Similarly, "i" is the mathematical symbol for “imaginary number.” But not in the marketplace. There, it translates as Apple products. Whether consumers are Apple customers not, "i", as in iPad and iPhone, now means Apple in the minds of thousands of them.
Access to customers is vital to your bottom line, and the greater your mindshare with the buying public, the more products you will sell to them.
If a logo consistently connects with customers, and if the consumer associates the logo with trust, they become loyal. What’s the difference between one kind of coffee and another, one kind of pizza and another, one kind of athletic shoe and another? Not much really.
But I have friends who still order only Little Caesars pizza because they like the little guy in the logo who said “pizza pizza, pan pan!” in the chain’s commercials.
Sometimes the sheer entertainment value of a logo can engender loyalty. But if your logo consistently connects the customer with a good product, you’ll have a loyal customer.
Loyal, repeat customers are always good for the bottom line.
The audience you are marketing to is sophisticated. Even children by now have been around the block, exposed to thousands of advertisements, jingles, brand logos, and marketing tactics geared especially to them. Kids reflect their parents’ buying power.
A good, consistent logo that accurately reflects what your company and brand are all about builds trust among consumers. Trust goes, again, to first impressions.
Does your logo look professional? If it were at a business meeting, would it stand up straight, look them in the eye, have a firm handshake? If your brand involves entertainment, does your logo reflect that? Is it fun? Is your logo unique?
Or does it look like something you put together from clip art and paint programs, and online design farm, or logo-generating website – shoddy and cheap? Worst of all, does your logo look like a ripoff of another company’s?
Trust is necessary for your bottom line.
Buying is perception. Studies have shown that between a bowl of M&M’s that are all one color, and a bowl of M&M’s that are various colors, people will go for the mixed-colors bowl every time? Why? Because the human mind likes variety.
Given two coffee shops next door to each other, one with a catchy, intriguing, and pleasant logo, another with a bland, generic sign, which one would you step into?
The one whose logo lets you know that you’re going to have a good experience there drinking coffee. The reward your logo brings in getting people to walk in the door and buy the product is great for your bottom line.
(This guest post is written by Christopher Wallace for Hongkiat.com. Chris is Vice President of Sales and Marketing for AmsterdamPrinting, a leading provider of personalized items.)