This article was originally posted on designbro.com.
“Where and how can I get my business logo? It’s a question business owners often struggle answering, and one that may seem even more confusing when you see everything that comes up the minute you look online. Getting a logo is an important part of presenting your brand the right way. It’s a key in communicating with potential customers, and in making your brand memorable. People do judge a book by its cover, and they’ll judge your brand by its logo. So, doing it right should be a priority. And this can be tricky when you lack the information to understand what is what. We understand: you want a good logo, at a good price, and you want it done right. So, whether you’re on a budget, looking for the highest quality, or simply looking for the best value for your money, we’ve got the right method for you.
When you get down to it, you’ve got four options to get your business logo made: the online logo maker, a freelance designer, a design contest, or a professional design agency. Let’s go through them.
Click, Click and Bam! The Online Logo Maker
What is an online logo maker?
The online logo maker is simple and dirt-cheap. They basically utilize a number of existing images and fonts with tools that allow you to make your own business logo. You’ll type in your brand name, and anything else you want included on the logo, and then rifle through some options of symbols and colors. After a few quick choices, you’ll have a logo. Often, you’ll need to pay $30 – $50 to be able to use it.
The Ups & Downs of the Logo Maker
The online logo maker is, undoubtedly, the cheapest way to get your logo made. The way the tools are built makes it somewhat entertaining to play around with, and will give you immediate results. Unfortunately, the quality of the logo might not be the best. They tend to lack the one-of-a-kind feeling that a logo should have and are unlikely to be very specific to your brand. For instance the ‘font’ of your logo will be unadapted and anyone could use the same. Getting it done by any experienced designer is likely to get you much better results.
Keep in mind that the online logo maker might cause you some copyright issues. It is unlikely that the icons provided for designing your logo can be legally copyrighted. This means other businesses similar to yours may be using the same icons or similar logos. This could cause you a headache in the future, and is important to consider.
Is the online logo maker right for me?
If you’re on a tight budget, and lacking the time, the online logo maker is a quick and easy solution to get something made. However, investing a little more in getting an ownable business logo tailored to your brand is worth your time and money.
The Freelance Designer: Your Friend’s Friend?
What is a freelance designer?
A freelance designer is a self-employed designer that takes on different projects to make a living. It’s a little difficult to talk about them in a general and broad sense since each one has their own distinct portfolio and skill-set, costs and schedule. This means that your experience may greatly differ from one freelance designer to the next, as will the costs.
Finding the Freelancers
Finding a designer may be difficult if you’ve never done it before. If you have friends who can recommend one, that’s usually best because you know they are trustworthy. If you don’t have anyone who can recommend a good freelance designer, use Google and read some reviews.
A freelance designer is an interesting choice to get your logo design made. They can better tailor your business logo to your company’s needs and work closely with you to ensure it is exactly as you want it. But, with a freelance designer, two things are key to guarantee a great logo: careful choice and efficient communication. Allow me to explain.
Picking a Freelancer
There are a lot of freelance designers out there, and there is some risk involved when finding the right one. It is important to take the time to carefully evaluate their portfolios, and use all the tools you have to ensure that they are the right choice for your company. Otherwise, you might end up with a logo far from what you were hoping for.
Making It Work
Efficient communication is vital when dealing with freelance designers. You need to make sure the designer you are working with has a clear picture of your brand, your target audience, what you’re looking for, and the needs of your company. They need to understand all of this to give you the business logo you want. Moreso, you need to be able to communicate when a logo you receive isn’t exactly what you were looking for. Communication will ensure you get the best for your buck, and will make designing your logo less of a guessing game for your designer.
Many freelance designers will also require prepayment. Our suggestion? Ask for a partial prepayment and deliver the rest upon completion to ensure you get what you want. Moreover, make clear written agreements about when the work should be delivered, as you want to make sure your freelancer doesn’t miss their deadline. After all, you are dependent on the individual.
Should I look for a freelance designer, then?
All in all, a freelance designer is a decent choice if you can afford the time to pick the right designer. In terms of cost, this depends on the designer you’ve gone for. Some designers may take a lot longer than others, so the time it will take you to get your logo is hard to pinpoint. But, if you’ve picked wisely, you’re likely to get a logo that is uniquely suitable to your brand and of higher quality than online logo makers. Freelance designers also tend to be more specialized, which may mean they are better suited to do what you need.
However, if you’ve picked the wrong designer, you risk paying a lot more than you should be for a low quality business logo. This is why it is important to carefully evaluate the different freelance designers you can pick from. Freelance designers also tend to work at their own times, so getting in contact with them can sometimes be difficult. Moreover, some freelance designers prefer to maintain the copyright for their designs, which may come as a surprise and prove challenging for your company. Make sure to discuss all these aspects prior to choosing a designer to avoid surprises.
Going for a freelance designer can be a risky choice, and definitely requires a larger effort from your side to ensure everything goes according to plan. However, if the right choice is made and everything is communicated adequately, you are likely to get great results.
Be The Judge: Design Contest
What is a design contest?
A design contest is a more modern approach to getting your business logo made. It’s simple, you start a contest, giving some guidance of what you’re looking for in your logo and the needs of your brand. Designers all around the world see your contest and decide whether to partake or not. If they decide to join, they’ll send you some designs tailored to what you’re looking for and you can go through and pick which ones are your favorite. You can offer some feedback to help them improve their designs and receive revised versions. In the end, you choose a winner, and just like that you’ve got yourself a logo.
The Issues with Most Design Contests
You can find numerous companies that work with design contests online, although many of these are considerably flawed in a number of ways. How so? Well, in a lot of design contests:
- Designers are not vetted, which means someone with no experience at all can also participate. This leads to lower quality designs for clients.
- Only the winner receives the prize, meaning that designers have much lower chances of getting paid. Experienced designers are, thus, often unwilling to participate.
- Designers can see other entries, which leads to less originality between entries.
- The number of entries is unlimited, which means that the client is often overwhelmed with too many options, of which many are similar, or of bad quality.
Solving the Problem
DesignBro was born out of the need to improve upon design contests. We’ve developed quality control methods, limited entry competitions, created “blind” competitions, and ensured that all finalists get paid. What does this mean?
- In terms of quality control, designers upload their portfolio to DesignBro and have to be accepted before being allowed to participate. This ensures that all designers are experienced and likely to produce high-quality designs.
- Clients are allowed to pick how many designs they would like to see, with ten being a maximum. This gives designers a higher chance of winning, and avoids clutter for the client.
- A “blind competition” means that designers cannot see what other designers have uploaded. This leads to greater diversity for the client.
- All selected finalists get paid, meaning that three out of the ten designers could receive compensation for their work. This entices better quality designers to join, and make an effort in winning the competitions.
Is a design contest what I need?
If a contest design is done right, it can be cost-effective and not time-consuming. For example, at DesignBro a logo design can cost between $199 and $479, which is fairly cheap for a high-quality business logo. The process usually takes about three weeks, and allows you to give feedback to designers, receive updated versions and begin narrowing down which designs you’d like to pick.
A design contest allows you to pick from a variety of designs made by diverse designers. This abundance of choice gives you a greater chance of getting something you love than with a freelance designer. Moreover, you have the opportunity to provide as much guidance as you’d like to the designers, ensuring you get a logo tailored to your brand. It’s also a relatively cheap solution to get a high-quality and professional logo. On top of that, a design contest company will, usually, take care of copyright, making sure this doesn’t become a problem in the future.
However, depending on which design contest platform you choose, you could be bombarded with too many low-quality and similar designs. This may become more work for you than you intended. To avoid this, review how the design contest platform that you’re going to pick deals with these issues. Whatever platform you choose, it’s important that you take a proactive attitude and invest some time in providing guidance for designers to make sure you get what you’re looking for.
Overall, a design contest could allow you to get the high-quality business logos that may otherwise have been out of price-reach for a decent value, with increased variety, and relatively quickly.
You can visit DesignBro here.
The Full Package: Professional Design Agency
What is a professional design agency?
If you’ve got the money, a professional design agency can provide you the support to get a top-notch business logo. A professional design agency has a full staff dedicated to getting you the design you want. They will work with you to ensure your brand is what it should be, and to provide advice and expertise on how to improve and optimize your branding. You’ll usually pay tens of thousands for their guidance regarding the best logo and branding for your company. They’ll have a full team working on your case. It’s a comprehensive approach to getting a logo made, but a pricy one.
Each agency is different, so the time it will take them to have your logo ready could vary. However, usually, it will take a couple of months.
The Pros & The Cons
The pros and cons of a professional design agency are pretty easy to discern. The pros? It’s the best, most comprehensive approach you’ll get. They know what they’re doing better than anyone else, so you can be sure you are getting the best of the best. The cons? It’s expensive and time-consuming. You’ll pay thousands and thousands, and wait for months to receive an update. They take their time and they charge a considerable amount. So, it’s a matter of asking yourself if it’s worth it for you.
It’s also worth it to question whether what you’re getting is actually worth the price. Professional design agencies have some serious overheads; account managers, secretaries, expensive water or champagne to serve you when you come visit the trendy offices. In reality, you may find yourself paying more for these overheads than the project. It’s important to analyze what you’re getting, and whether the price is worth it. Think of it as flying business class – all of the luxuries are great, but the reality is that you pay a considerable price for them and end up at the same place as those in coach.
Should I pick the professional design agency?
At the end of the day the deliverable is the same: one good design that reflects your brand. We’ve already discussed the many ways you can get this design, but if you are looking for professional tailor-made advice, people to discuss strategies with, and someone on call at any moment, a design agency is the best, and probably the only choice for you.
So, How Should I Get My Business Logo?
We know it’s a lot of information to take in all at once. But the basics are simple. If you’ve got tens-of-thousands to spend on a business logo, go for a professional design agency. If you have minimal budget to spend on a logo, and need a quick-and-dirty solution immediately, the online logo maker is your friend. If you know of a good freelance designer who you can afford, and who you trust, then that’s a good choice for you, as long as you’re aware that you have to be careful and communicate as much as possible. If you’re a small or medium business, and you want the best value for money, then you should probably opt for a design contest.
Whatever you choose, realize that the logo you get will speak directly to consumers about your brand, so it’s important it’s saying what you want it to say. Make sure you make the most out of whatever method you choose, so you can get the logo your brand needs.”
Make sure to give the original article some love here!