In a previous article, we discussed the initial steps you need in athlete branding. Now that we’ve tackled the foundations of your brand, it’s only apt that we proceed to strengthen these building blocks with the help of a great design and branding logos.
As marketing-savvy experts know, every brand must develop a unique and memorable logo—a vital factor in the brand build process. However, before using an online design platform, such as Canva or AI visual generator, to develop your logo for free, keep in mind that your company’s image is more than just a logo for your website, business card designs, and social media pages. It’s part of your brand’s identity. Your logo is as important as your company name, as this sets the customer’s first impression.
People will associate your brand with the symbol you choose. For example, everybody recognizes the iconic Nike “Swoosh,” right? With that premise in mind, let’s explore the role of logos in-depth, but first, we must talk over the common misconception that brand logos are mere embellishing images.
A Branded Logo is Not Just Simple Graphics
Although logo designers are highly demanded professionals in the creative marketing industry, many people strive to grasp the importance of a professional logo representing their brand’s visual identity. Many individuals still consider logos as simple images or icons. While logos are indeed visual assets —a logo is one of the visual elements of a brand—they have major importance that goes beyond the visual identity. Brand logos represent the brand’s personality. On a deeper level, your brand logo is part of your brand guidelines which is a method to connect successfully with your target audience and potential customers.
Your logo design can make or break the success of your brand. This is another reason you must think twice before choosing a free logo maker over an expert graphic designer with the right design skills and who understands your branding strategy.
Brand logos are the first thing potential customers see. Logos make the first impression and can lead to either success or failure business. A logo’s design should set the right mood and create a good initial impression to ensure maximum Return on Investment (ROI). Nothing against free online logo designs, but consider the number of people doing the same because it’s free. Based on that, how will generic logos impact your business?
Think outside the box: Your goal is to stand out in an overcrowded market, right? So, will a generic logo be able to do that for you?
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Whether you are a small business owner or a self-driven individual, consider that logos and icons create a higher chance of success for a business versus those that launch quickly without clear branding guidelines, brand image, brand voice, and brand story.
Remember, a brand identity consists of people’s perception of your sports team or athletic business. Should your brand logo design fail to reflect your brand values and messaging, it can easily set customers off.
A successful logo is aligned with brand values, mission, and vision. People should be able to look at your logo and recognize what your brand stands for. People should be able to get your company’s overall feel and personality simply by looking at your logo. It should also be unique enough to set you apart from your competitors. Keep in mind developing a great website without a proper logo and brand image is pretty much pointless, as logos play a significant role in the crucial step of building brand identity.
Your Brand Identity Says a Lot About Your Organization
Brand identity includes the visible elements—such as color, design, and logo—which makes your brand unique and recognizable to your target audience. If you want to know how a brand like Coca-Cola developed a strong brand, check out this blog about The Brand Identity Matrix, a Harvard instrument that will inspire you to integrate a solid brand identity.
The visual cues used on the brand’s logo will depend on the values a business wants to stand for. For example, Ikea’s iconic blue and yellow color scheme signifies trust and reliability. Its bold typography creates the impression of a strong, established, and inclusive brand. Before you make a logo, remember that the more cohesive and unique elements are, the higher chances of it shaping into an easily recognizable brand.
But a brand’s scope doesn’t start and end with a logo. A brand’s identity should extend to each of the external characteristics of your sports team’s brand, including iconography and imagery. For instance, for your fans to quickly identify your brand, it needs icons and artwork present on its website and other channels.
Your brand’s art style should successfully communicate the core of the internal identity. Each logo design should align with the brand—from each linear element to the vector files and even your color grading. This is not something you can do with a free logo creator.
For example, if you’re an athletic-driven brand, the way you convey your brand personality plays a significant role in connecting with your target audience. If they get the wrong message, you’ll lose them and even fail to establish a solid community of loyal fans and customers. Hence, you must know the critical elements of the logo and brand identity design.
Understanding Your Differentiator
Before you create a logo, remember your unique selling points. Brand identity should be the result of this process—that’s why it’s expected to complement the core ideas of the entire brand. Your logo should serve as your identity and incorporate your values, selling points, and brand promise. How do you achieve this? Simple—by ensuring that all key elements to your logo design are cohesive with the brand.
Four Key Elements You Need to Consider when Building Brand Identity
Creating a Visual that Is On-Point
There is quite a debate about which should come first—creating a logo or a brand. However, looking at the bigger picture, a clear brand is needed before any other tangible elements of your logo designs come to fruition. Without knowing what the company name stands for, one cannot make a logo.
Memorable logos matter because it acts as the center of your brand identity. It’s the visual cue your customers are exposed to most often. Your brand logo design should be cohesive with the rest of the elements of your brand identity and the broader emotional appeal.
Take a look at some of the most well-known professional logos worldwide. Simplicity is a common theme. A simple logo design becomes a blank canvas for customers to fill in memories and other positive experiences with the brand. Furthermore, logo creators use this style to quickly scale to different mediums such as social media graphic design and other traditional marketing collaterals.
The simpler the logo is, the more flexible it becomes. Remember, you’ll use your sports business’ logo on multiple social platforms. Hence, a good logo design is flexible enough to look great on a giant billboard or a tiny icon on social media.
Using Elements That Are Unique to Your Brand
Logo designs are not a sum of different shapes, fonts, and colors. It should clearly represent what your company is about and what you want to do. Sometimes, the best logo designs have a simple yet iconic trademark in their brands. Let us step outside the sports industry bubble and think about Dolce and Gabbana’s famous D&G or even Starbucks’ smiling mermaid.
To think of it, mermaid and coffee do not even align, but its uniqueness paid off to become a trademark many consumers are willing to purchase. This is how you can tell that a brand has gained the best value in its niche.
The Importance of a Cohesive Color Palette
No one can think about a beautiful brand without playful colors. Before a new business creates a logo, another critical point to think about is your brand’s overall color palette. It may be tempting to pick whichever color piques your interest, but learning the emotions conveyed by different colors can help you pick out the right ones! This is not something you can freely do on a logo maker online.
Color psychology is often intuitive. For instance, shades of blue express calmness while red and yellow both communicate passion and energy. Depending on the shade or tint of each color you use, you can dictate the consumer’s emotional response. If you aren’t sure, you can always consult with a design studio or a branding expert to get the best results.
The Best Typography for Your Brand Message
Now, you might tease those obsessed with finding the right font as ‘typography nerds’ but finding the right script that works well with your color palette and logo gives you a competitive advantage. And having business cards for your sales team to give out and pitch decks with your logo and typography greatly helps communicate your brand message.
Fonts have the power to be recognized even without context. A single typeface that works well with your logo and color palette is key.
Before you create a logo, a few great tips on using the right typography for your brand identity are avoiding fancy and default fonts and avoiding using more than two font families at a time! However, it still varies depending on which industry you are in. Serif might work on fashion, while thick fonts like Adam and Zebrazil can work in sports.
The Importance of Maintaining Consistency in Your Branding
Wikipedia defines brand language as the body of words, phrases, and terms that an organization uses to describe its purpose or reference its products. It’s used to help consumers relate specific words or ideas to a particular company, product, or service. While it may be true that visual graphic matters most for a brand, the language your brand uses still affects your audience’s perceptions. Consider your vocabulary and tone of language when building brand identity.
Like creating your brand’s visual language, the audience comes first in deciding the vocal style you will be using. Having a great understanding of your targeted consumers is critical, but aside from this, you must also think about your brand’s culture! What does your brand hope to stand for? What is its mission? Some of these questions have been mentioned earlier but remain relevant when deciding your verbal language.
Aside from the considerations above, consistency should be kept in mind. Like creating your on-brand supporting graphics, your language should be consistent. Once your brand’s language becomes inconsistent, it can create an element of distrust between you and your audience.
Why the Perfect Brand Logo Guarantees a More Promising Future
Start building the perfect logo for your business. Not only would you have a fantastic branding strategy, but you would generate more leads from your website, and sales would follow. It might not seem like it’s a huge deal right now, but having an awesome logo, tagline, and website statistically works better than those who prefer to make a logo on online logo maker apps.
How to Market an Athlete part 1 (Building a Brand)
How To Market an Athlete part 3 (Website Development)
How To Market an Athlete part 4 (Marketing Campaigns)