"The Great Logo Debate"
Logo this. Logo that. "Brand values" this. "Consumer experience" that. What's it all really worth? One of entrepreneurship's greatest mysteries continues to walk the halls of the great value debate. Over the past 5 years the cost for a good logo has seemed to rise as quickly as gas during the war in Iraq. On one end, entrepreneurs are calling for a foul in regard to the pricing that seems disproportionate to the service provided. On the other, designers are preaching that the validity in the pricing rise is as easy to see as the value placed on brand image. A direct affect proper branding.
"That's just too much for a logo."
All entreprenuers (all decent ones anyway) understand that the name of the game is to get the most value out of a task with the least amount of overhead as possible. It's is also a well known fact that there are certain things in the process of developing a successful business that call for the proverbial hand to reach deeper into the proverbial pocket. You know, things like security (facilities and tech), staff training, signage and yes, brand design. I know that on the outside looking in the thought could be, "wait...how could a simple drawing/design be worth this type of investment? Ive got a friend/family member that can draw and is good on the computer, why would I pay a stranger this much to do the same thing they can? I mean, what am I paying for?" Good question.
"More Than Meets the Eyes"
A little transparency here. I myself am a designer. I have been in the game for 10 years. But I am also an owner of multiple businesses and one of the voices responsible for the maintenance of other brands that do not belong to me. That being said, my perspective is equal and balanced on the topic. Now to answer the question "what am I paying for?"
The answer is Face Value. Just as your eyes/nose/mouth work together as the face of your person, logo is the face of your brand and should more than just 'sit there and look pretty.' It should make a statement upon first glance that speaks to what your company provides or its brand values or both. That statement leads to curiosity/investigation that should wind up in an inquiry. It takes more than a "cool idea" for all of that to take place. It takes actual research and creative processes that require art AND business knowledge. If you are close to and can hire someone that possesses the skill sets as well the levity to handle the pressures that come with these tasks, please keep them close and consult them for work. If you aren't so sure.....keep reading.
First, let's assess your "options". You know, the friend/younger cousin with the family creative gene that could do your brand design for a fraction of the cost? Before you take the oh so tempting frugal route, ask yourself a few imperative questions:
1. Do they even wanna do it?
In my many leadership roles, if it's one thing I have learned, it is that if you try to make people do something that they don't genuinely want to do, sooner or later; it WILL show up in their performance, and in turn, the finished product. You can't bully or manipulate quality work out of someone. Especially a creative.
2. Have you seen/can they show you a collection of work that resembles what you want them to do for you?
One rule to remember in the design world.
NO PORTFOLIO = NO DEAL.
Thank me later....
3. So, they've sent over their portfolio link. It is any good? Do YOU like it?
There is a such thing as two amazing pieces that just don't fit. Don't flip coins that you don't have to lose.
Don't get me wrong, people have taken a chance on hiring me to do a project that they didn't see in my portfolio, but do to my strong will to learn and grow, I researched and practiced specifically for those projects and wound up nailing it. A rarity these days if I may say so myself.
4. I can get this done for "half that price or less".
Yes. You absolutely can. And if you're blessed, it will work out. But as forementioned, you shouldn't flip coins that you don't have to lose. I have been the recipient of numerous clientele that have these horror stories of how they already paid $50 for some logo that they hated, didn't understand what brand it was for or never saw at all before the "designer" vanished into thin air. Listen to me, THERE ARE CROOKS OUT THERE. They will bait you in with this unbelievably low price (regular price/specials are different) and then you realize that their work isnt even worth that. These type of "designers" give those of us that have invested blood, sweat and hard earned cash into our craft a bad name. Use the previous tips given and good judgement to avoid these situations.
5. It COST to be good at this.
Very few (I would humbly guesstimate about 2%) of us in the design community were actually born good at brand design. See, brand design in particular is equally a science as it is an art. You must learn what typefaces/colors/schemes to use for what brand types. Color theory can also a huge give a designer's work a huge boost in relevancy (Free ProTip). Learning these things and staying on top of the latest in design trends, whether in a university setting or trade setting as well as keeping your design software current more tone than none will cost a pretty penny. In short. It cost to be this skilled. So it will cost to put said skills to a work.
I hope I helped a settle and clear up any mysteries/myths about the cost of brand design. As forementioned, I am a brand designer with specialty in logo design. So if you are in need of work please do not hesitate to reach out and inquire. My contact info is as follows.
L. West II / 313.243.4447/ firstname.lastname@example.org
Love & Unity Prevails. Peace.