What Makes A Great Logo? 4 Tips For Amazing Branding!

“What makes a great logo?” It’s an important question! 

You know you need an amazing logo to compete in the marketing world in 2021. Your customers and potential customers expect you to have a logo. If they are researching your brand and don’t see a well-made, professional logo, their trust in your reputation will take a hit and they’re likely not to invest their time or money in your brand.

And just having any old logo isn’t enough in and of itself. If you have a logo (but it looks like a kindergartener designed it) your users are likely to leave unimpressed. Your logo doesn’t need to be a historic work of art, but it does need to be clean, professional, memorable, and enticing to your customers and potential customers.

So how do you design a great logo? What makes a great small business logo? Our graphic design and branding experts at JSL Marketing & Web Design are here to run you through how you should think through your logo and branding design needs!

Read on to learn more! 

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Great Logo & Branding Design Tips

1. A Great Logo Is Simple

Think through the iconic logos of the last thirty years. Many of them are very well-designed but are not necessarily complicated or intricate. The Nike Swoosh is one of the paragons of this practice, but there are plenty of other minimalist logos. Coca-Cola, Target, Airbnb, NBC, and Shell are all great examples.

A good logo needs to be versatile, so less design “noise” is often better. Like with Target or Shell, a simple logo is recognizable from a highway in a split second, in a way that a complicated logo would not be.

Remember, the average American sees well over a thousand ads a day, so it’s easy for your great and ground-breaking logo to go forgotten. Make it easy to remember by making your logo and trade dress simple. These logos are easier to digest and thus easier to associate with your brand. 

2. A Great Logo Is Impactful.

The McDonald’s arches are not necessarily the most awe-inspiring logo in the world. However, this simple design is extremely memorable to users, whether they’re online, watching TV, or on an interstate. While the Golden Arches may not be the Mona Lisa, they’re very recognizable, which is one of the highest praises you can give a logo!

3. A Great Logo Is Strategic.

There’s no one right way to design a logo. Does a logo need to be associated with your industry?

Lufthansa, a German airline, shows a crane taking off in the same position as an airplane leaving a runway. This logo immediately associates the brand with travel in the mind of the user, but this isn’t necessarily a requirement. What’s important is that each brand made conscious decisions that aligned with their business goals.

For instance, an international flight across the Atlantic, the bread and butter of Lufthansa, is not a quick snap-second decision, so potential customers are likely to be researching flights when they come across the Lufthansa logo. Therefore, tying that logo to the feeling of travel and flight is a great decision!

That’s not true of a brand like Target or Shell, where quick brand recall helps drive revenue. (I.e “I need gas” or “We’re out of milk.”) There’s no right way to design a logo, but it is important to think through your brand’s needs and design a logo that supports those needs.

4. A Great Logo Uses Psychology.

A lot of marketing is subconscious. You can carefully plan an advertising spot, thoroughly research your target audience, and craft a beautiful value proposition, but at the end of the day, a lot of the factors that compel people to purchase are emotional, not logical.

Marketing isn’t just giving your audience information; it’s compelling them to feel a certain feeling about your brand. A great logo ties into these feelings. Think about McDonald’s red or yellow. While it’s a sharp color scheme, the McDonald’s colors also stimulate hunger. Did you know that red can be a stimulant?

Likewise, think of how many financial institutions use blue in their logos. Why is that? Well, it’s because blue is often a “soothing” color, a shade that conveys trust, calmness, and stability, all qualities you’d love to see in your insurance, investment firm, or bank. 

Common Logo Mistakes

Overthinking It

Again, remember that the best logos in the world are sleek, clean, and memorable. They are not overly complicated and hypercomplex pieces. If your logo looks “messy” then your users are likely to not remember it. 

Going With Trends

Great logos are timeless. They transcend the decades and don’t need to play off of a fleeting design fad. This doesn’t mean that logos might not need slight facelifts over the years. However, it does mean that designing a logo in line with a new design fad is probably a short-sighted approach. Design fads come and go in a matter of months. You’re designing a logo to last for years! Stick with more timeless and “safe” design elements. The classics are classic for a reason!

Using Generic Imagery

There’s a fine line between sleek and timeless and simple, boring imagery. That’s unfortunately a very subjective line. It can be a tricky balancing act to find the right recognizable imagery without overly complicating the design, while still keeping your users engaged. Some brands play it too safe and use overly simplistic design, motifs that are quickly forgotten. Symbolism is great, but if your logo looks like ClipArt, you’re not going to stay top of mind for your customers.  This is also a great reason why you should avoid online logo generators, logo templates, and free logo makers. Talk to our team if you have any questions on finding the line between doing too much and doing too little. That’s especially important because being too boring could inadvertently become…

Logo Plagiarism

Ripping off another brand entirely is difficult to do unintentionally. However, the more generic your logo is, the less unique it becomes and the greater the odds that your logo is too much like other brands. You don’t want to be accused of plagiarism, or worse, have your customers conflate your brand with a completely unrelated industry.

Do your homework upfront to ensure that you’re creating a unique logo. 

Our Graphic Design Process

Finding that winning mix and designing a memorable, simplistic, unique, impressive, and uncomplicated logo is often easier said than done. That’s where the logo designers of JSL Marketing & Web Design enter the picture! Whether you need a completely new logo, a facelift, or custom social media graphics, we’re here for your custom logo and graphic design needs!

To begin, we want to ask some questions about your brand.

  • Do you have a logo? 
  • Is there a brand style guide we should refer to?
  • What do you want your customers to think of when they think of your brand?
  • Who are your competitors? What do their brands look like?
  • Are there any industry-specific logo design trends we need to be aware of? 

From there, we can offer you several brand development services to help you with where you are in the logo design process! 

  • Concept Development!
  • Brand Development
  • Value Proposition & Messaging Research Logo Design 
  • And More! 

Know when you trust JSL Marketing & Web Design that you’re trusting the best. \We’re a digital marketing industry tycoon with years of experience working with real estate, healthcare, and tech clients and we have the recognition and laurels to prove it!

We’re in it to win it and are ready to help you build a long-lasting online brand for the years to come. Build your brand to last with JSL Marketing & Web Design by filling out the contact form. We look forward to discussing your marketing needs with you!

How Do I Take Great Product Photography Shots?

“How do I take great product photography shots?”

It’s a good question! The right product photography shots are absolute game changes for a small business but taking the right shots can be trickier than it sounds. 

“How hard can taking good product shots be?” You might think at first glance. However, there’s a lot that can impact your next product shoot. If you’re like most small business owners, white balance, light sources, apertures, and editing software aren’t your realm of expertise. That’s understandable, but it can complicate getting photos of your products since you really need to understand pre and post-production when shooting your product.

Don’t worry…we’re here to run you through the best practices for marketing photography and product shots! When we’re done, you’ll know everything you need to know about amazing product photography shots and how to incorporate them into your digital marketing plan. 

Read on to learn more!

Product Photography & Digital Marketing

“Why do I need to use product photography in my marketing plan?” 

Well, let us answer your question with a question. Do you remember the slogans of every single business you frequent? Of course you don’t. 

However, do you recognize the logos, the ads, and the trade dress of most of those businesses? Odds are likelier that you remember these visual elements over slogans and other written descriptions.

 That’s why visuals are so critical to your marketing plan. They simplify things for your viewer. No one wants to read what color your product is, how big it is, and what it looks like. A photo solves that problem immediately and often in a more impactful way! Remember, most website users will leave your website in under ten seconds if they don’t find what they’re looking for. To simplify things for your users, use one descriptive product shot to get the job done instead of a paragraph describing the product.

It’s not just a truism to say that product photos are game-changers. The data backs that claim up! Consider the following. 

  • Product photography shots sell more products. And no wonder! They’re a great resource for those considering purchasing from your brand. Over half of customers use product shots as one of their main resources when deciding to purchase! If you aren’t including quality images of your products on your website for your potential purchasers, you’re leaving them in the dark and sabotaging your online store performance.
  • Product photography shots leave a bigger impression on your audience. Almost all eCommerce users believe photo quality is THE most important aspect of a product’s digital presence. If you aren’t putting your full effort into your product photography, you’re likely missing an opportunity to WOW your potential customers! 
  • Product photography shots improve overall website performance. A third of users will leave a site if they are not satisfied with the visuals they see. You don’t want users bouncing off your site on any page of your website, but you especially don’t want this on product pages! If your users are reading about your products, they’re probably pretty close to purchasing. Keep them on the page longer with great product shots!
  • Product photography improves other aspects of your marketing. Web pages with better photos are more likely to be shared on social media and it’s no secret that photography in emails improves click-through rates! Getting your product shots right means you have amazing product collateral on hand for future marketing endeavors as well!

This is all well and good. You know you need to utilize impactful product photography shots now. But you still might be wondering….

“How do I take product photography shots?”

The Basics Of Great Product Photography

  • Start With The Lighting. There’s a lot of magic that can be done with editing software, but poor lighting is a tough one to bounce back from. A good editor might be able to make small adjustments, but it’s easier to have the right lighting from the beginning than entirely touch up the shot after the fact.
  • Have The Tools. Nothing against the average smartphone, but the camera and editing software in your pocket just isn’t enough to do your product photos justice. You need, at the very least, semi-professional quality equipment, but preferably professional caliber. Remember, users believe product photography shots are critically important to their website experience. If your product shots look like you snapped a few pics with an old flip phone, you’re probably not going to get the checkout. Trust us, use the best equipment you can. This is not the time to use the wrong tools.
  • Don’t Overthink It. A photo of your products isn’t the time to make a modern-day Mona Lisa. A simple white background, clean light setup, a good light source, and a well-focused shot does wonders! The most important part of this is the actual product. Your customers are interested in the product in question and just need to make sure that they’re getting everything they need from your product photos. Keep the attention on the product.
  • But Get Creative.  We know, we know. We just contradicted ourselves. However, there is a fine line to walk between being straightforward and being boring. Your shots should be simple and highlight the product in question, but they don’t need to be boring. Think of a wine bottle with a wheel of cheese next to it, set against a white background. It’s not overly cluttered or noisy, but it does make a better impression!  Think about your product photos through the lens of the viewer. Does a particular inventive setting or creative prop add something to the shot without distracting the viewer from your product, the belle of the ball? Then add it! If not, then it probably doesn’t need to be included. 

JSL Marketing & Web Design For Amazing Product Photography

We hope you enjoyed our tips on digital marketing product shots and how to use them in your marketing strategy. However, we know that the next step in the process can still be daunting.

For one, you need the right equipment. If you don’t have the right tripod, editing software, camera, and lenses available, then you’re likely not going to get the right quality of shots. That could negatively impact your marketing performance! 

The next challenge is lighting. If you aren’t a skilled photographer, you could easily take the wrong shots at the wrong time of day and drastically impact the white balance of your product shots. That’s a risk you just can’t take if you’re really trying to make the most of your digital marketing product shots. 

That’s where we come in!

Our product photographers are ready to help you take amazing product shots today! All our photoshoots are…

  • Customizable
  • Strategically Planned
  • Designed To Be As Stress-Free As Possible
  • Efficiently Planned To Maximize Your Budget
  • Creatively Designed For Optimum White Balance, Natural Light, Camera Angle, And More
  • Shot By Professional Photographers 
  • Optimized For Social, Web, Mobile, and Email Sharing
  • And More!

Product shots are also only just one form of digital photography you could utilize in your marketing! Talk to our photography experts for our formal recommendations on…

  • Headshots
  • Corporate Photography
  • Location Photography 
  • Product Videography
  • Brand Mission Videos
  • & More!

Ready to get started? Fill out the form below and we’ll be in touch!