Preparation is key when starting a logo design project. Asking the right questions leads to better answers. Here are seven questions to help you start a logo design project with your new client: 1) What or who is the logo trying to represent? 2) What is the overall feel of the logo? 3) What color choices are preferred? 4) Where is the logo going to be used? 5) Is the logo an icon, typography, or a mix of both? 6) How much is the budget for the design? 7) How soon is the design needed?
Starting a logo project is exciting, but you shouldn't lose yourself in the hype. Asking the right questions from the start can help you commit to a path that is not only best for the client but also something you are proud of. It's not about giving the client what you think they want but figuring out what they need and designing something functional and that resonates with their brand. Furthermore, a clearly defined scope and expectations will help you have a better outcome. To help you along, here are 7 questions you should ask before starting a logo design project with your new client. These questions will give you the foundation to start the project on the right foot.
What or who is the logo trying to represent?
Please know this before you can start designing. If it's a company logo, does it have to include any sort of symbol? Does it need to be tied into any other existing logos? What attributes do you want it to have?
A company's logo represents its brand; therefore, it should have an identity that matches the expectations of its target audience. A logo should be unique and memorable, something that can be easily reproduced by anyone, anywhere. It's more than just a pretty symbol or a clever shape—it must carry meaning. It's the face of the company, and building the right image and perception of the brand is essential to its success.
It also ensures everyone is on the same page, so no one is surprised when they see the finished product. You should ask yourself if your client is interested in having a memorable logo. Ask them if they want a logo that can serve as the "face" of the business and be used on all their materials.
What is the overall feel of the logo?
It's good to ask this question before starting a logo design project. The overall feel of the logo is something you need to make sure you agree on before spending time designing it, and it's good to have a creative direction in mind, so you have a focus while designing.
Specifically, to pick a logo that accurately represents your client's company, you need to ask: Is there a specific mood, atmosphere, or feeling that they want to convey? Does it need to be playful, elegant, or professional? What do they want people to think when they see the logo? Who is the audience? What message do they want to convey through their logo? Answering these questions will help you provide your clients with exactly what they need.
What colour palette is preferred?
The reason it's important to ask this question because most clients want their brands to be consistent. It also helps if they want a specific colour scheme or if they're looking for a certain effect in your design. After all, a logo should be memorable, and certain colours tend to evoke more emotion than others. For example, red is aggressive, green is natural, and blue is dependable. Each company has a unique personality that can be reflected in its brand identity through colour choices. And if your client wants to keep costs down, you can offer two colour options, just one colour, or even just the plain, yet classic, black and white combination.
Where is the logo going to be used?
One of the most important questions for logo designers to ask before beginning a project is where the logo will be used. It's not just about how well it looks on a sticker or in a certain font; it should also be considered what it looks like on a website, on a t-shirt, as a watermark on an image file, and in 3D. This isn't just to determine if the logo needs to be a vector file or an image with different versions of it for use on different kinds of media but because it's important to know how versatile the logo will need to be in its application.
This question helps to avoid potential complications in the future, such as when a company wants an icon created for their app or website but doesn't include any guidelines on where it should appear: How big will it be? Will there be a background colour behind it? Will it need to look good on a black background? There are so many questions that are better answered up front than later.
Is the logo an icon, typography, or a mix of both?
Another important question is whether or not the logo will be an icon, typography, or both. The difference between these two styles can sometimes be confusing, but it'll make more sense if you think about what each one represents. An icon is a pictorial representation of something, while a typography symbol is more conceptual. Icons are meant to be very easily recognizable from their image alone—you might even say they're iconic because they're so memorable. They're also meant to be universal symbols that can be applied to different products in different contexts with little variation.
How much is the budget for the design?
Asking about the budget is a good idea to know how much the client can afford to pay you. That's because knowing how much money your client has to work with can help you make decisions about the quality of your deliverable, and it will also help you decide what kind of pitch to give them. Take their answer in stride, find out what they can afford, and see if you can work with that amount. You don't want to work with a client who can't afford your services, just as you don't want to work with a client who wants you to keep the price low so he or she can make more money from you through more projects later on. Remember, not all projects are worth your time; if the potential payoff is not worth the work involved, it's a waste of your time.
How soon is the design needed?
Finally, it is just as important to ask about the time frame of the entire project. Make sure your client knows how far in advance you'll need to start working on their project. You might need time to develop ideas or do preliminary sketches or research, so having enough lead time is important. Also, ask if there are any specific goals they want you to meet within that time frame (for example, they may want something designed that they could use immediately without having to pay for any extra work).
Asking the right questions upfront will help you provide a better end result. Before diving into the nitty-gritty of designing a logo, you'll want to ensure that you fully understand the client's needs and expectations. Remember that every client you work with will want something unique, and they'll tell you what they want in the process. By asking questions up front, you give yourself and your client time to assess whether you are a good fit for each other, making the entire process more efficient and smooth.