By Kimberly Erskine

Every business at one point or another has to face a challenging task: designing a logo. Even if you come into a business that already has a logo, at some point you’re going to want to change or update it just to keep things fresh. Think of some of the top brands like GAP or Walmart for example. They both have highly recognizable and perhaps even iconic logos. Yet, they still both made decisions to change things around in recent years. While Gap may have been less successful than Walmart in their logo redesign efforts, it still got everyone talking, and more importantly, it reminded business owners that designing a logo may not be as easy as it sometimes may seem! If you are planning to design or update your company’s logo I the near future, you’ll want to keep these 5 important things in mind.

It takes time! You can’t expect to just sit down and design a good logo in 20 minutes or less. Even the logos that appear simple or minimalistic take a great deal of time to get just right. You should expect to put in at least three hours to design a good logo. The more time you have, the better. Remember, your logo is a representation of your brand. You should want every last detail to be perfect.

Practice makes perfect! Designing a logo can be a frustrating process at time especially if you are not very experienced in the art of graphic design. Many companies may choose to employ a graphic designer just for this purpose. However, when you design the logo on your own you’ll end up with a more personal logo that your company will be far more connected to. There are now easy to use logo designer tools to help make the process a tad bit simpler. If you feel yourself struggling, don’t give up! Remember, even top designers had to learn. The more time you put into it and the more you practice, the better your designs will be.

Feedback is key! A logo should not be attributed to just one person. Even if you are the only one designing the actual logo, the process should be a team effort. Ask your co-workers and colleagues for feedback. Remember, it’s always best to be honest about a design. If your co-workers and colleagues don’t like it, your target audience won’t either. It’s better to get harsh criticism from others before launching your logo out to the public. Feedback is the #1 way you can gain insight on your design and learn how to improve.

Have a message! If your logo could talk, what would it say? If you can’t come up with a answer to this question then it might be time to go back to the drawing board and come up with a new design. Your logo is a representation of your company. It should be easy to recognize and connect with. When people see your logo they should think of your company and the services they offer. You can incorporate text into your logo, but keep it at a minimum. Your design alone should be strong enough to display your company’s message, mission, or purpose.

Be cautious of colors! One of the biggest mistakes that companies tend to make when designing their logo is using colors in the wrong way. You need to be extremely mindful of which colors you use because it different colors can cause different reactions in people. For instance, blue is often known as a calming color. This might not work as well for a gym where you want people to feel more pumped up. Similarly, red is used by restaurants a lot because it can make people feel more hungry…but you wouldn’t want to use it to promote an appetite suppression drug or weight loss clinic. Refer to color meanings and color psychology before finalizing your logo design to be on the safe side.

When you remember these 5 things designing your company’s logo will be a much easier and less stressful process.

Kimberly Erskine is a marketing professional, freelance writer and blogger.