Logo Design Ideas: How to Create An Iconic Logo for Your Business

man analyzing branding design ideas

Are you looking for logo design ideas?

There's more to creating a logo than slapping a few letters and a symbol together. It's the identity of your company that can unify your customers and employees alike.

The average person is exposed to about 5,000 logos and marketing messages every day. There are a lot of iconic brands like Nike, Adidas, Coca-Cola, Renault, Audi, Samsung, Microsoft, Google out there. That's just scratching the surface of brands you'll be competing with for attention every day.

How can you make sure that your logo stands out and is remembered?

Read on to find out.

What Makes a Logo Iconic?

Creating a logo that stands out and is remembered takes great design and a little luck. There are plenty of stories of how the top logos came to be.

Phil Knight paid a design student $35 in the 1970s to create the Nike swoosh. Don't worry, she got plenty of stock options for her work later on.

You're not going to get an iconic logo paying someone $5 on a freelance site, but you could create one on your own. You just have to know what goes into great design.

If you take a look at the top logos of all time, you'll see that they have a lot in common. You can take these logo design ideas and learn from them.

These successful logos are:

  • Relevant to the brand and the audience
  • Tell a great story
  • Are simple designs
  • They are unique
  • They create a positive impression

Here's some homework for you. Take five of your favorite logos. Write down how each one has these success traits mentioned above. Also, note how you can apply those characteristics to your own logo.

What Does Your Logo Stand For?

Now that you know what makes a great logo, you can start the process to create your own. You're not going to start designing just yet. You're going to put your plan together. You want to be able to know what your design means and who you're targeting.

A logo reflects your business and what it stands for. It's a visual representation of your promise to your customers.

For example, Volvo is a company that promises safety. FedEx promises fast delivery anywhere in the world. Coca-Cola promises happiness. That's what makes these brands and logos so iconic - they follow through on that brand promise.

What does your company promise its customers and how can your logo reflect that?

Here are a few questions that will help you figure that out.

  • Who is your perfect customer?
  • What do they want in your products and services?
  • What are the most important things that people have to know about your company?
  • How is your company different from the competition?

When you go through these questions, you'll learn more about what your company is about. You can use them as inspiration for your logo design.

When Starbucks created its iconic mermaid logo, it wanted something that was as seductive as the product they served. The mermaid is a Norse legend, and since the coffee was sold on the waterfront across from Pike's Market, the nautical theme connected with the brand.

Where Will it Be Used?

You also need to know how your logo will be used. Will you post it to banners or will you just have it on business cards? Will it be on t-shirts or on your website?

How your logo is used will influence your design. If you're going to use your logo on small areas, you don't have enough room for a tagline. On t-shirts, you don't want to have too many colors, or they could bleed together.

Think about how you're going to use your logo before you start to sketch out designs.

Logo Design Essentials

You're just about ready to start designing your logo (finally), and it would be useful to know some of the basic principles of design.

When you think of design, everything really has a purpose. That's because the mind processes visuals on a subconscious level. The color should evoke an emotion, and that's the same with the font and lines that are in your design.

For example, a font can make someone think of the IRS. Other fonts can be bold or take someone back to the 1920s.

When you choose your font, think about the style of your company. Is it modern or retro?
Colors also convey emotions. Blue shows strength, security, and reliability. Yellow is happy, red creates a sense of urgency. Check out this in-depth article on color in design by Logo Maker that explains why people love blue in their logos.

Revisit your list of things you want people to know what your company is about. How can you use fonts and colors to convey those things?

Sketch Your Logo Out

You can start to sketch out your ideas on paper, or you can make the process easy by using an online design tool.

You'll want to create several versions of your logo. You might have them in different colors, one with a tagline for some applications, and just a symbol or other applications.

Once you have a few variations, test them out. Show them to your employees and customers. See which ones they like the best. Most importantly, ask why they like those versions. Find out if there's something in that design that stands out.

Be open to feedback and be prepared to be surprised. You'll find that the one you expected everyone to like to be hated and the one that you thought was ugly to be the winner.

Top Logo Design Ideas

Designing a logo requires simplicity, but it's not a simple process. It requires a lot of in-depth understanding of your target market and your company.

You also have to know how to use color, typography, and design with purpose to communicate exactly what your company stands for.

Once you know those things, the actual design process should be easy. You can use an online tool to create a beautiful logo that can be just as iconic as the billion-dollar brands.

For more great how-to tips, check out these articles on how to use business cards and how to set up digital displays.


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