Now that you started on your way to setting up your new franchise, you need to build your brand. Part of your brand is your logo – your face to the word and your chance to a great first impression. Being aware of what goes into creating your brand, how to design a logo and what to expect from the whole process will make this a smooth, painless and enjoyable experience.
While your logo is not your business, and while a new franchise that offers excellent services or products can survive an unfortunate one, it is best to take full advantage of your opportunity to make an early statement and to help your brand become memorable and recognizable.
So how do you design a logo? Here are 5 steps to follow.
Logo for Scoops N Smiles ice cream store, Florida, by Mindful Design Consulting
1. Define your brand
In order to create an image that truly represents your franchise, it’s important that you first take a step back, dive into some self-reflection and put into clear terms what your business is all about. This is important not only for coming up with a great logo, but because your logo is an integral part of your identity. In order to tell the world who you are, you have to know it yourself.
This is the time to ask yourself a series of questions. What does your franchise offer? How is that different from what your competitors offer? How do you want to be perceived? What are your values? How would you define your business in few words? Who is your target audience? What emotions or reactions do you want to bring about in those who see your logo?
Write down your answers and try do define the “personality” of your business. By the end of this process, you will be amazed at how much you have learned about yourself and what you want to achieve. Don’t forget to consider the medium for which you create the logo, whether it is to support your online presence or to appear on your marketing colateral such as printed materials, shirts etc.
Logo for Sprinkles on Top store by Mindful Design Consulting
2. Look for ideas
A great logo doesn’t just happen. You will have to approach it step by step – and this includes analyzing the logos of your competition, brainstorming, and finding out what you love about your favorite logos.
Looking at what other do doesn’t mean you should copy their ideas. During this process, however, you will learn about your preferences and about what style you identify with. Don’t limit yourself to your competition, but step outside your field. Put together a list of your favorites. Creating a mood board (digital or otherwise) is a great way to collect ideas, colors, images or anything that will serve you as a starting point in brainstorming.
Logo for Frosted Luv dessert store, by Mindful Design Consulting
3. Choose a style
Your logo’s particular design tells a lot about your franchise business. A classic style makes you look confident, reliable and trustworthy, while a quirky one may appeal to young audiences looking for something different. Clean minimalist logos show that your business is open to what is new, while a retro one suggests that you know how to bring back and enjoy the good things of the past.
When choosing a design style, consider colors, fonts, images, shapes. You can opt for only text, only images or a combination of both. You can also choose to create and use a mascot, design your logo as an emblem, or simply use a letterhead or an abstract symbol. Regardless of your choice, remember that all these options carry a certain image, whether presenting you as traditional or fun, trendy or timeless. Analyze a few different logos and find out which style (and imege) you prefer.
Logo for Crabby restaurant in Richmond, Virginia, by Mindful Design Consulting
Fonts and colors are essential in creating the right image. When learning how to design a logo, you need to study and understand the psychology of color, and how different colors create different emotional responses. Choose accordingly: If you want to be seen as reliable and trustworthy, for example, blue is the perfect option. If you’d rather be seen as friendly and fun, orange or yellow are your best bet. Green may suggest a closeness to nature, red may create a sense of adventure, drama or passion, and pink has a feminine vibe. Black is elegant, purple sophiticated and rich, gray confident.
How you combine your colors is important too, whether you want to create some contrast or give off a sense of harmony. For a logo designed for an ice-cream store or game room, for instance, a combination of multiple bright and pastel colors can create a sense of fun or can even evoke the flavors of the frozen treats.
Finally, fonts have the power to create a mood and capture the character of your business. Serif or non-serif fonts can give you a classic, respectively a modern look, while script fonts make you look more accessible. Decorative fonts offer you plenty of opportunities to create a logo that is uniquely yours.
Logo for Besties Cool Treats frozen yogurt and ice cream shop, by Mindful Design Consulting
4. Perfect your logo
Creating your logo is a process during which you will come up with more than one logo version. Evaluate them all and see which one stands. Put yourself into your customers’ shoes and try to look at your logos with a fresh eye. Which one creates the right emotional response from you?
Play with your favorite logo versions. Which one is more likely to look good in different sizes? Which one will be as effective in a digital medium as well as printed across a shirt, banner or business card? Are the colors a good combination that can later be used in your marketing collateral or your store’s interior design? Which one is the most versatile and looks great against backgrounds of different colors – or even in just black and white?
Then, do they look like they will be as efficient in a decade as they are now? Are your logos too trendy so that they risk to be outdated soon? Do they truly capture the character or your business? Are they too complicated or too simple? Are they too similar to those of your competitors? Can you tell right away, just looking at the logo, what your business is all about? Is it something that you would easily remember and recognize?
Once you answer all these questions, you may find that one logo is better than the others, or that you need to go back to the design board.
FroYo Craze logo versions by Mindful Design Consulting
5. Write down guidelines
Your work does not end with choosing your final logo. It is important to make sure that anyone who will use your logo in the future will do it correctly. Maybe you decided that your logo looks good only on backgrounds of certain colors, or that its strength lies in the combination of images and text, so that the two should never be used apart. These details should all be gathered into a document that will keep your logo safe from bad usage.
As a final note, when designing our customers’ logos, we always provide them with both the RGB and the Pantone colors that we used, so that they can have a perfect match when working on their online presence, printed materials or interior design. This is another detail that should go into your document in order to make your future branding efforts easier.
Logo and colors for Sweet Life candy store and arcade room, by Mindful Design Consulting
Marketing collateral for Sweet Life candy store and arcade room
If you are thinking to open a new business or are in the process of rebranding and remodeling your existing business, contact us to get a free consultation from Mindful Design Consulting. Click HERE to price your project design.
Also, take a look at “Branding By Interior” e-book, the only book written on this subject at this time. It brings insight on how you can turn your business into a market-dominating competitor by using human cognitive responses.