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  • #995639
    Johny
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    Not sure if this is the right place, but I always think of logos as part of the marketing angle.

    I have seen a few questions on here recently relating to logos.

    There seems to be quite a lot of importance placed on logos these days, as it is seen as a representation of a brand, an image, essentially how a business wants to be viewed.

    Much of that importance is of course trumpeted by people who make money from designing logos.

    As a consumer, I appreciate a logo is something that we recognise. The golden arches being a good example.

    As a small business though, how much is that logo really worth. I can’t recall for example, ever having seen a logo of a small business and made a decision to buy a product or service based on the logo.

    So I ask, what is the value of a logo for a small business?

    #1203185
    eatyourveggies
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    “I can’t recall for example, ever having seen a logo of a small business and made a decision to buy a product or service based on the logo.”

    And that’s the point. I can’t recall ever watching a movie and making a decision that I like it or not based on the set design, the lighting styles, the colour grading, etc. And that’s because it’s all subconscious. But just because I can’t remember what I specifically likes about that movie… my brain was making judgements / decisions about it. To illustrate the point, let’s look at logos that were just horrible:

    The London 2012 Olympics logo (at a cost of 400,000 pounds):

    http://static1.businessinsider.com/image/4f15d89769beddb64200002d-400/london-2012-logo.jpg

    Some claimed it looked like “some sort of comical sex act between The Simpsons.”

    A lot goes on in the subconscious but every angle, curve, colour, font… reacts with our subconscious. If you go on a first date slapping on whatever is comfortable, that person will judge you accordingly. So we spend time to pick a shirt with the right lines and colours that accentuate our best features. We want that initial reaction from our date to be “wow, I can’t pick why… but I like this guy”.

    At the same time, most small businesses fail – and I agree, it’s not because of their logo. And therefore to spend $10k on a logo for a small startup with little funding is not a good way to spend your money. And a small business can change its logo as they grow without causing too many problems. Major companies change their logos all the time.

    I recommend to my clients to spend at least $400 – $1,000 on a logo if you have reasonably big plans. If it’s just some on-the-side, local business, then who really cares what the logo is.

    #1203186
    bb1
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    Its not the cost of the logo, its the quality of the logo, or the appeal of the logo.

    Just some examples
    Coca Cola = $0
    Google = $0
    Nike = $35

    Don’t get caught in the how much trap,

    #1203187
    eatyourveggies
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    Well, Bert… there’s always exceptions to the rule.

    Your message is “don’t get caught in the how much trap” (because an expensive logo doesn’t mean a good logo). Fair enough.

    But that also means then the same message of “don’t get caught in the how much trap” (because a free / cheap logo doesn’t mean a good logo) is also true.

    But in order to be helpful, I’m sure we can all agree that the message “you get what you pay for” is generally correct. So, sure… if you want to start with free logos / Fiverr… go for it. And if you want to invest $100k and 6 months research… go for it.

    But in order to help the original poster out (unless of course he just wanted some interesting discussion), then I’d recommend what I’ve recommended above.

    #1203188
    Johny
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    But in order to help the original poster out (unless of course he just wanted some interesting discussion), then I’d recommend what I’ve recommended above.

    I just wonder what a logo is worth for a small business. My company does have a logo, but it is the same as it has been for 30 years, before I was involved.

    I accept that it is hard to put a $ value and quantify what a logo provides in terms of real benefit, but on the other hand, it is convenient to justify something when you don’t have provide a tangible benefit.

    I ask the question because even at $400-1,000 dollars you mention, I would be hard pressed to pay for a logo. And that is more than likely because I don’t see the benefit.

    I feel for small business, their branding is more a personal thing that comes from the quality they offer or the service they provide.

    #1203189
    eatyourveggies
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    Yeh, it’s hard to put a value on it.

    A logo is only a small part of the overall “brand personality”.

    But the company name and the logo are the first thing people see. So it’s the starting point of a customers relationship with you. The first impression.

    Service, packaging, the sort of phone hold music you pick… all adds into the branding mix. Combined, these elements form a “brand personality” for your business and people will judge that “personality” and decide whether they want to do business with you or not.

    If you’re flicking through Google search results where all you see is the domain name… we decide what to click on largely based on how we respond to the domain name.

    If you’re looking for a good quality pizza, and you see:

    pizzaria.com
    gourmetcrust.com

    For me, I respond so much better to gourmet crust. Now, if Pizzeria wanted to attract those who prefer quality over price, and didn’t do some research on what personality their business needs to attract that kind of customer, and didn’t do some focus groups on how people respond to the word “pizza” and “aria” / “eria”… then they may be losing a lot of customers to “gourmet crust” simply because of their domain name / business name.

    Would it be worth spending some money on getting the name right? For me… hell yes. Particularly with an online business.

    #1203190
    ckgdesign
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    I love have Bert decides to say:

    Google $0
    Nike $35
    Coca Cola $0

    And that like… sets the tone for all businesses. What a joke. So many millions of other “successful” businesses rocking out on a $0 logo, aren’t there Bert? They’re all killing it just like Google, Nike and Coca Cola, right?

    What a rubbish type of post yours is. You could say the same thing about basically every single industry. And, you call it a trap if you pay any more for a logo? You’ve got to be kidding me.

    You might not place and value on a logo, Bert, and I don’t care. You aren’t the type of customer I want, as a designer, anyway. I want to be someone who tries to design your logo in the correct direction. I don’t want to be someone who designs for the sake of it, or based on current trends. You’re welcome to spend your money as you wish. I’m not going to try and fight for your business because I know you place no value on what I create or what any designer creates.

    Nike’s logo cost $0, yeah? Perhaps that’s the case, but look at the net value of the logo right now. Look at how well it sells. Like Apple, it’s the face of their entire company with one small symbol. The Nike logo MAKES the Nike product. It’s so prominent on all their shoes for example (Bert – you may not have recognised it because you place no worth on a logo) and consumers want to be seen with that logo on their feet. Apple has a one colour product with their logo on it and basically nothing else. Take the logo away… do you think people will continue to buy the product….? Go and ask Nike and let me know what they say.

    Your post infurates me. It’s people like you who will head over to 99designs and fiverr and pay absolutely no one to make a logo and crowdsource. How would you feel if I asked 200 people to mow my lawn and decide to pay one person. AND, on top of that, these “designers” on those websites couldn’t care less about your business at all. Professional designers dont go on there and find business. Professional designers look into your company, try and create a logo for your target audience and demographic and create a visual solution. They communicate a message. Anyone can throw a few gradients together and thats what you’re buying with 99designs / fiverr. Ask the “logo designer” on those sites if you can you use the typeface anywhere? Do you get sued if you’re seen with a copyrighted symbol or typeface and you’re using it? How do you use the logo for a spot colour job, how do you convert it to CMYK / RGB, convert it to SVG, use it correctly with a style guide.

    A logo is a piece of the package too. So much branding stems from a logo. Your pallete is basically a lock when you get sent that final logo design. Look up colour theory and tell me what colours convey the right message for the logo, for your company, for your brand image.

    You might think consumers don’t care. But they do. You go to The Reject Shop or JB Hi-Fi and based on their logo, branding and presentation, you can tell straight away that you believe you’re going to get a cheaper product. Right?

    Or is a logo useless?

    It’s not the cost of the logo, you’re right. It is the quality. But so many other factors play a role, and in your example, you’re stating that all good logos are cheap. Some companies pay thousands for their logo and it’s so successful, but you’ve decided to leave all of those companies out of your example, haven’t you?

    #1203191
    Johny
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    This is probably my fault and perhaps haven’t explained myself too well.

    If you look at the history of Nike, it wasn’t even Nike for the first several years. It was a successful business before the swoosh. Did it come the mega success because of the swoosh, the marketing around “Just Do it”, the athlete endorsements, or because they offered a good home grown brand (not home made brand mind you) and a good quality product.

    I suspect it had much more to do with the others, than because of the swoosh.

    But that isn’t the issue for me or the reason I asked the original question. Not sure you can really compare Nike with a small corner store.

    If I own a small bedware shop called “Johny’s Jim Jams”, with a small retail outlet and an online presence, what value do I get from paying someone for a logo?

    As a small business owner, do people come in to my store because they saw a logo or do they come in because they know what I sell, like my service, through referrals and repeat business, because of my marketing strategy which may include a small logo in the top left corner or my materials, etc. Do they visit my online store because of a logo or, as Mr Eatyourveggies suggests, because of my domain name?

    Yes, as my business grows into a large entity and I become the guru of all things jim jam related, I understand a logo becomes part of “who I am” as a business. Different fonts and different pantones provide a specific point of reference.

    If however, at the initial stages, the logo is only a small reflection of what I am, then is it even necessary to spend money on it.

    I have always believed companies gain a reputation, good or bad, as a result of their quality and actions. Indeed, I could cite many companies that once had a good reputation, but due to cost cutting or various other reasons aren’t looked at the same way. Nothing to do with logo and all to do with their quality and actions.

    #1203192
    ckgdesign
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    Johny, post: 240987, member: 34822 wrote:
    If I own a small bedware shop called “Johny’s Jim Jams”, with a small retail outlet and an online presence, what value do I get from paying someone for a logo?

    As a small business owner, do people come in to my store because they saw a logo or do they come in because they know what I sell, like my service, through referrals and repeat business, because of my marketing strategy which may include a small logo in the top left corner or my materials, etc. Do they visit my online store because of a logo or, as Mr Eatyourveggies suggests, because of my domain name?

    Yes, as my business grows into a large entity and I become the guru of all things jim jam related, I understand a logo becomes part of “who I am” as a business. Different fonts and different pantones provide a specific point of reference.

    If however, at the initial stages, the logo is only a small reflection of what I am, then is it even necessary to spend money on it.

    I have always believed companies gain a reputation, good or bad, as a result of their quality and actions. Indeed, I could cite many companies that once had a good reputation, but due to cost cutting or various other reasons aren’t looked at the same way. Nothing to do with logo and all to do with their quality and actions.

    Your logo helps dictate your brands image.

    You can set a tone and mood with your logo. You can demonstrate, through one image, if you brand is expensive or cheap. You can appeal to a target audience / demographic straight away, through the use of your logo. You mighn’t even realise it as a consumer.

    Why do you even bother styling your website or choosing a nice theme or fonts or anything if you can sell based on your so called reputation alone?

    Stick Johny’s Jim Jams in Times New Roman and watch the dollars roll in.

    #1203193
    Johny
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    Why do you even bother styling your website or choosing a nice theme or fonts or anything if you can sell based on your so called reputation alone?

    I didn’t say that I could. But I certainly put a lot more stock in my reputation than I ever would in a logo. (As per the Nike example, the reputation of the company is seen in the logo, not the other way around.)

    As for the website, I am much more aware that people will buy from my website based on it’s layout, ease of navigation etc., than I am if there is a logo in the top left corner.

    You are defending your business, and I have absolutely no problem with that. But in fairness, your first post is really nothing more than a rant.

    When you cannot provide something tangible (and as yet there hasn’t been in this discussion), I think there is a right to question the value one gets from a service.

    Small business operators are bombarded with all manner of services, by all manner of experts, that all have the right solutions. This all adds significantly to the costs when starting a business.

    Let’s face it, if someone is looking for cheap logos, then it’s because you guys in the business haven’t convinced them of the benefits. of putting in more effort, or because you can’t. And that is something most people in business do find difficult, myself included.

    #1203194
    SunnIP
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    Logos are just part of the entire “brand” that is to be marketed. The intent of a logo is to distinguish yourself from others, so if you want your business, not matter how big or small to really stand out from the crowd then a good logo is critical.
    Hand in hand with a good logo and establishing a brand name, is protection of that brand name and logo via a trademark.
    Registering a trademark helps you to protect the investment you are making in your business.
    For advice on brand protection strategies, feel free to contact me.

    Kathryn
    http://www.sunnip.com.au

    #1203195
    eatyourveggies
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    You won’t get anything tangible.

    When it’s difficult to find a tangible answer… just take the question to extremes. So in this example:

    Is it worth not spending any money on a designer to design a logo and just hacking up a basic one yourself using Time New Roman? That’s one extreme, and I suspect your answer will be, “No, that’s not a smart choice”.

    Okay… so is it worth spending 6 months and $400k on a logo with a team of branding experts? Again, I suspect the answer will be, “No, that’s not a smart choice”.

    Which means… the answer is somewhere in the middle. And that’s as “tangible” an answer as you can get. It’s up to you where you put yourself on that sliding scale between those extremes, and that comes down to how much money you have and your personal opinion on what value the logo will bring to the business.

    I think Bert took one extreme (“don’t get caught in the money trap”), and ckgdesign has taken the other extreme (“it’s all about the logo, how dare you spend only $400 at 99designs”).

    Just like whether you decide to spend money on a really nice shirt for your new date, or whether you just decide to go in jeans and a t-shirt… it’s a branding decision you’ll make based on a whole range of factors. It’s your call.

    For what it’s worth… an I fear sparking a debate about crowdsourcing and taking this thread too far off topic…

    I love 99designs.

    “How would you feel if I asked 200 people to mow my lawn and decide to pay one person”….?

    Well, if those 200 people knew the deal, and were happy to mow the lawn knowing that only one gets paid, then what’s the problem? They’re all consenting adults in that game. So let them play it. No one’s getting ripped off. If a designer feels they’re getting ripped, they should not do the work. Pretty simple in my eyes.

    And I’ve found some fantastic designers through crowdfunded logo campaigns. If you provide an excellent brief and get into deep discussion with EVERY designer (as I do), you find that there are some gem designers amongst the riff-raff who really make an effort to understand your brand personality and create a logo which best reflects that.

    #1203196
    Johny
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    Which means… the answer is somewhere in the middle. And that’s as “tangible” an answer as you can get. It’s up to you where you put yourself on that sliding scale between those extremes, and that comes down to how much money you have and your personal opinion on what value the logo will bring to the business.

    Thankyou, I appreciate that response. Regardless of the impression I have given, I am not anti logo, but I am for questioning the costs associated with running my business.

    I don’t think business operators (new ones in particular) spend enough time questioning.

    Ultimately, every cost of running a business should go towards assisting to generate revenue in some way. And it is no different from what I do. If I cannot justify why my service provides a benefit it is hard to justify why someone should use my service. And I think that is fair enough.

    But I can provide tangible examples. Much harder when you can’t.

    #1203197
    Design Point
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    Some great comments and I tend to agree with some of the users here that it doesn’t matter how much you pay for a logo, it’s the quality of the brand created and how it is identified by the consumer.

    Your business identity is the most important factor about your business, it’s what leaves a lasting or memorable impression to your consumers.

    I would suggest hitting up some graphic design agencies and asking for their portfolio work to see the quality of logos they can produce. Happy to help out with that as well.

    Good luck!

    #1203198
    vinainna
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    Oh wow! Such a hot discussion! Of course I need to leave my answer too :)
    Ok, can I ask you guys several simple things: why do you buy Mac? Do you think you buy it because you like a logo? Why there are no other computer looks so good and so attractive then Mac?
    My opinion is: if I say that we don’t need to pay to a lawyer, we can figure out all problems by ourselves. Its not so difficult right? We don’t need to pay to a doctor, we can heal ourselves easily. Why do we need to pay to designer? There are so many tools in internet we can study them. Its so easy. My nephew can do a logo for you for free. What is the logo? Its only combine some fonts that’s it!
    Now look around and see how important is a profession of a designer. The chair you are sitting somebody created, computer somebody created, your furniture and a house somebody created.
    If you do your business you need an attractive image anyway. Because business must attract customers somehow. Bad picture of a product is a bad luck. Everything around was designed by somebody. I’m really upset because of undervalue. 5$ logo will make a 5$ dollar business. Thats it. Thats what my experience says.
    But I like we bring to the light this question. I’m always interested to know directly what people, who are not designers think about design.

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