How to design a logo: Research stage
Any branding project must contain a research stage as the beginning step for success. It is an essential part of the work process if you are a profound professional designer or project manager.
The first thing you need to understand is what is client or project problem is. The designer must do research to be able to find a solution or solutions to the problem.
Your client will highly approve the project from the first time, if you qualitatively examine the different degrees of the problem. Otherwise you may have a good chance of being rejected and the client decides that you are not competent.
Research is a way to learn what you need to design and how it will be used. It allows you to easily discover and choose the right direction for the design. You don’t have to play blindly with random logos and take guesses as to the logo that a client requires.
As a common rule the designer must dig for more information if he isn’t familiar with the client’s products or services. Ask your client all the necessary questions and do your own industry research as well as use the information from blogs and other sources.
Research is a complex process but it can be easily divided into a few topics with related questions.
Topic 1. What is the reason that company need a new logo?
The typical cases may be being following listed:
- it’s a new company who need a logo
- the company already has its own logo but for some reason they need to have it redesigned.
The first case is easy enough to understand and you don’t need an explanation for it.
However, in the second case there can be various reasons:
– company developed this logo in-house or for cheap price and after some time decide to refresh logo
– this company is growing and expanding and that’s why it want to show this changes in logo redesign
It can be changes in management, ownership or company spirit or may be presentation of new product or service. Designer must know about the current situation, business goals so that to moving forward with right logo design.
Topic 2. Define what the company do
During research designer must look up history of the company, their services or products and which customer problem they solving.
You need to understand what message and feelings company want to deliver to customer. This important information can cardinally change whole design.
Topic 3. Define the target audience
Typical question you may ask your client is – What is your target auditory? Definitely you must consider the audience of client’s business while working on logo design.
Most business clients can describe their exact audience or at least describe its ideal customer.
Standard parameters is following: location, age, gender, behaviour and lifestyle. Key parameter is understanding what the customer need and how company can solve this problem with their product/service.
Topic 4. Define main competitors
Basic task is research and combine information about existing competitors on the same market.
It include direct and indirect competitors:
– companies who provide same product/service to identical auditory
– firms who offer similar product
You may ask your client about it but be careful with their answers because it’s not always highlights the real situation on market.
In most cases logo design must separate your client from competitors and build recognizable brand.
Topic 5. Understand company’s long-term goals
Well-designed logo can deliver value long time and pass time test. To reach this goals designer must know overall company development plan and ambitions.
As example we can suggest situation when company planning to extend their product list or add new services.
Also you can try to ask client where it sees itself in 5-7 years’ time.
If you wish to develop brand logo or order other graphic design for your product or business, we can help.