Chapter 12. Logo Approval

I've decided to dedicate a separate chapter to this process because it's the stage where you might decide to change the designer. The further you progress, the greater the potential for temporary and financial losses.
My algorithm is simple
The designer sends me logo options for approval. First, I evaluate them based on how well they align with the brand's communication platform. Next, I consider the concept and creativity behind the composition. Then, I assess the overall impression and the quality of execution. Lastly, but no less important, I ensure the uniqueness of the design.
Let's start with the last point about uniqueness. "Everything new is well-forgotten old," and, in many ways, everything has been invented before us. Some basic requirements include avoiding direct associations with other trademarks (logos), avoiding direct copying or the use of elements (fonts, symbols) from others. There have been situations where a client brought in an element from someone else's trademark and asked us to use it in their logo.
Such requests violate ethics and the essence of branding. In any case, you should be aware of the risks because legal departments of major brands are vigilant. In our practice, there was a case where a major sports brand tried to challenge the registration of our trademark due to the similarity in the prefix and fonts in the brand name.
Monitor competitors, study their logos and style. The task is to be different, to stand out from the rest. Fear makes companies and brands resemble each other, pushing them to copy, but this becomes one of the reasons for project failure. Customers stop differentiating brands; they become indistinguishable. In the vast flow of advertising, promotions, and special offers, one season's discounts replace another. The task is to capture the potential customer's attention, to draw it to yourself, to be memorable.
From this perspective, the creative concept of the logo composition becomes its advantage. In some cases, simplicity is necessary, but even in minimalist logos and short names, you can express interesting ideas.
Now, back to where this book started and what I suggest revisiting again and again in developing your brand – the brand's communication platform. The logo should reflect the attributes and qualities of your brand, drawing ideas from metaphors. The colors should complement the mood that you want to convey in the image.
Many of my clients, lacking knowledge and ways to assess, used the following words: "I liked it," "it appealed to me," "I loved it." These are all subjective evaluation categories, but unfortunately, that's all they had. However, you have a chance to assess the work more professionally, considering the knowledge you've gained from this book.
Important! The developed logo can be evaluated solely based on its adherence to the creative brief. The client's subjective evaluation cannot be a reason for rejecting the completed work.
If the logo meets all the above evaluation criteria, but as the client, you "don't like it," "it doesn't appeal to you," or "it didn't capture your attention," then it simply means that this designer is "not your match." Most likely, you either incorrectly formulated the creative brief or didn't carefully assess the designer's portfolio.
What should you do in such a case?
Settle the payment, wish the designer well, and search for another professional. Unfortunately, there's no other way. Attempts to make changes, offer ideas, argue, motivate with additional payment, or talk more about your project usually lead to nothing. You will offend the creative person and waste a lot of your time and nerves.
In my agency, I've refined this business process to perfection. We provide three logo options, and according to the terms of the contract, the client has no right to request changes. They can only choose one of the ready-made options. In exceptional cases, we may be flexible and create a fourth option or make adjustments if we see that the client suggests something reasonable. However, as I've mentioned, in 99% of cases, this disrupts the balance of the created system and distorts its harmony.
On the market you can find designers who will develop 10-20-30 logo variants for a fixed fee. An incompetent Customer rejoices, thinking that he has made a good deal. Unfortunately, this only suggests that the designer uses the “from the cannon to the sparrows” approach, without thinking too much and without studying the brand platform, he hopes that by completing such a large number of logo options, one of them is more likely to fall into the taste of the Customer. In this case, a lot does not mean good.
So, let's summarize this part of the book
The logo development process logically follows from the previous stages: the brand platform and naming
We draw up a detailed technical task in advance, study competitors, look for references
In the process of searching for a performer, we carefully study the portfolio and the approach to development
We will coordinate the vision of the development direction with the candidates
We choose the artist whose work you like, not the one whose price is cheaper
We specify in what form the work will be submitted, we ask you to send a sample of the logo presentation
We evaluate the work according to the criteria specified in this chapter
We do not make edits, we accept the finished version
We pay off and thank you for the work done!

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