How to complete a logo design project
I rarely document my design process – Sometimes I don't even know how I get from Point A to Point B or how I transfer an abstract idea into something almost physical. So this post is for me, it's kinda' like my little experiment where I can designate my musings.
Step 1: Understand your brief.
Your client will approach you with an idea – It is your duty to deconstruct their gibberish and their cute-attempt-to-speak-your-native-design-language, into something that you can work with. This is a perfect time to ask questions (about their business, their vision, requirements etc) and scribble potential logos on paper. It is also the perfect time to back out. If you don't believe in the vision or genuinely like the client, GTFO of there!
Step 2: Negotiate a price.
Usually, this is where most designers fuck up. Being a sales person is definitely not in our genetics – Now is the time to look them straight in the eyes (very important) and ask; WHAT IS YOUR BUDGET? Usually, they will vomit it out as they can't lie eye to eye. If their budget is $10k, charge them $5k. If they don't speak up, give them three figures suggested by Justin Fox:
1) A figure they'd like to spend.
2) A figure that they think is an absolute steal.
3) A figure that they can afford, but only just and would love to save a bit if possible.
So if it's a small business who wants to start a T-Shirt label, then measure it up in your head – The business has to have at least $1k budget to make some T-Shirts, so you can't charge them $1-3k for a logo – $250 would be a reasonable price and be sure to ONLY design $250 worth of your time.
Need more guidance?
Watch this in-depth video: How To Be A Good Negotiator.
Step 3: Get inspired.
Don't get upset if the idea doesn't come to you immediately – Just go with the flow. Everybody has different techniques for getting inspired, mine starts by researching what has already been done in the market and building a competitive analysis. I use this time to scroll through infinite feeds of trending, aesthetic visuals and find something that speaks to my soul. I recommend having a scribble pad where you can doodle endlessly and locating yourself somewhere that encourages productivity.
Step 4: Present first revision.
HERE IT IS – Never present a logo to a client and then follow it up with; WHAT DO YOU THINK? or ANY FEEDBACK? You're only giving them the authority to judge. You shouldn't give a fuck what they think (to an extent), they hired you to do the thinking and you know what looks good – SELL IT, BABY! Give them a reason to love it and walk them through your creative decisions, only if they ask.
If for any reason your client isn't happy with the outcome, don't panic. It's okay. Try to understand what went wrong. Revisit Step 1 and start again. Keep in mind, you should only offer a total of THREE revisions, so make sure your client knows this every time. OH, and watermark your logos if your client hasn't paid fully, the last thing you want is someone stealing your work.
Step 5: Package & handover files.
You're in the home stretch! Be sure to maintain a professional relationship with your client to make sure they come to you for design services again. As a designer you are expected to deliver professional-standard design files, so always be sure your clients are happy with the files you've provided. Here's a list of required files to help you get started:
- The original, editable file (i.e. AI)
- A vector EPS file in digital (RGB) format
- A vector EPS file in print (CMYK) format
- A web preview file (PNG, JPEG, PDF)