Graphic design

10 basic principles of a successful logo design

The first step in building an effective brand is creating a logo design. Most entrepreneurs understand the need for a professional approach in business and pay special attention to the creative process. They know that a high-quality logo can significantly increase the popularity and recognition of any brand.

Creating a logo is not just a graphic design, it is a process that requires both theoretical and practical knowledge. All of the most outstanding and memorable logos are similar in one: they are simple, concise and informative. Every designer searches for the best way to achieve such harmony in a logo that it would look like a real work of art. Today we are going to tell you about 10 basic principles that will help you create the right logo design. If you will constantly check with them during the creative process, there is a high chance of getting a small masterpiece out of your work.

1. Simplicity

The main secret of all famous logos is their simplicity. Keep in mind, that your potential customer has only a couple of seconds to remember the logo. And during this time you have to make him interested. Therefore the simpler the design is the better.

No, we do not encourage designers to be primitive in their work. During the recent years, logos have already turned from complex designs into simplified forms. The design should be elegant, easily remembered and cause stable positive emotions. Esthetics in this matter is very important, just like dynamics and ease. And although most entrepreneurs see their business as a complex process, the consumer still likes cute and easy recognized forms. In addition, with time any self-respected company will search for the improvements for their logo and simple forms are easy to adapt to changes without losing the meaning inherent in it.

USA network logo

An example of a simple and easy to understand logo

2. Readability

Perhaps you have come across logos, which, despite their uniqueness and originality, were almost unreadable or misleading in the meaning of the text. Don’t force people to decipher texts in the logo!

Font is a very important choice to make when designing a logo since it forms the brand image. Successfully selected font emphasizes and strengthens the chosen style and compositional solution. Like in any designer area, graphic design has its trends. But we do not recommend using decorative fonts in complex logo designs because it only distracts consumer’s attention and breaks the general composition.

Spotify logo

Easy to read logo

3. Scale

When creating a logo keep in mind that you will probably want to put in on a product, business cards, pens, advertising banners or even cups. Make sure that your logo looks sufficiently distinct even in a small size and attractive in a large one. Try to avoid very thin lines or complex patterns.

A cup with a Starbukcs logo on a table

Starbucks logo on a cup

4. Make it recognizable

This principle will be met if the person who saw your logo just once will certainly recognize it the second time. The best way to create a memorable logo design is to think about the processes of the human memory. For us, the shape and color of the design are very important since they form our visual perception whether it is a bright orange circle or a black square.

Psychologists have long proven the effectiveness of using different colors. For example, a brand for young people can use an aggressive red color. While blue is associated with reliability, durability and tranquility. Green is associated with freedom of action and environmental friendliness. Yellow will be an excellent choice for brands offering sweets or clothes.

Remember that the goal is to make customers associate your brand with strong positive emotions. For example, if your brother used Fahrenheit cologne from Christian Dior, you will most likely have a feeling of security and reliable shoulder when seeing CD logo.

Animal planet logo

Green color is associated with nature

5. Versatility

Always remember that the momentary fashion is quickly changeable. Sometimes our pursuit of modern trends can result in rapid obsolescence of the design. Therefore, it is better to use universal design techniques and tools. As we said earlier, the visual image has to be deeply imprinted in the memory of a customer and cause strong feelings. But logos created for the sake of trends rarely cause stable emotional connections.

How many designs with the conceptual idea have you seen? Only logo, which message does not become obsolete for many years, can successfully survive in the volatile mass media. You really don’t want your design to look weird in a couple of years. But if you manage to create a detailed concept, you can always decorate it with trending colors to stay on top of latest graphic trends.

Coca-Cola logo

Logo design which has stood the test of time

6. Know your audience

Before creating a logo, study your target audience: who are they, what do they like, how old are they etc. Different types of logo design suit different types of customers as well as different categories of products. Funny and pretentious logo, for example, will be a great choice for a company that offers candy for parents with children. If your company sells electronics, it is worth choosing an image that will resemble something technical in calm colors. For an expensive category of goods that businessmen buy, select the colors and patterns that are associated with reliability.

Rolex logo

A logo of the brand offering luxury watches

7. Use graphic dynamics in a logo design

The logo design should not only convey the emotional mood but also translate the dynamics necessary for the specific goals of the company. In European culture, for example, the movement from left to right is perceived as positive, related to growth and progress. Rotation on the axis conveys a sense of harmony (remember the “yin and yang” sign). When developing a logo, a designer should take into account the dynamics of the brand.

FedEx logo

The right pointing arrow in between the “E” and the “X” represents precision and speed

8. Creativity

It implies the presence of a certain highlight, hidden meaning or message in the logo. And this message should be simple and understandable. If a person sees this hidden message, he will certainly appreciate it and remember your logo.

Baskin Robings logo

The logo depicts a large “BR” that doubles as the number “31” and stands for the 31 classic Baskin Robins ice cream flavors

9. The adaptation of a color scheme

It may happen so that you or your client will need to put the logo design on a dark background or vice versa. It may be for a new catalog for an exhibition or an advertising layout. At the design stage, the factor of displaying the logo must also be taken into account. To do this, professional designers should conduct a critical evaluation of the quality of the chosen color model of the logo on both light and dark backgrounds.

LinkedIn logos on different backgrounds

LinkedIn logo variation on different backgrounds

10. Do not overthink

And the last but not least principle is to not overthink your design. Remember that a very simple Nike logo is considered the most recognizable in the world. Select all the necessary elements of your design and cut off unnecessary ones.

Nike logo

Nike logo