Logo design | The creative process

This short article will describe the logo design process, a ‘behind-the-scenes’ in the development and construction of a mark. Cohort is a creative agency and logo designer in London, based in Battersea Power Station.

A logo is the defining, instantly-recognisable visual representation of a brand and the first thing a person sees when looking at a company or organisation.

The value of a logo

The value of a company is largely attributable to its brand. You can find out more about brand value in the an article about brand value vs. brand equity written (for Relevance) for The Drum by our Creative Director, Frances Martin-Isaacs.

Simply put, if customers like your brand, they will buy your product. The logo represents the brand.

The logo design process is a multi-stage journey involving research, client collaboration, creativity, and technical savoir-faire – each playing a crucial role in the logo design process. Business strategy is fundamentally instructive therefore understanding the client and their business goals is the first step of this process.

Logo design: Step 1 - Understanding the client | The creative brief

The purpose of the creative brief is to define the deliverables of the project and agree them, in writing, with the client. Typically we agree to 2.5 rounds of design.

Round 1: sketches based on a clear brief
Round 2: honing in on one logo from round 1, refining and adding colour
Round 3: The final polish and output

Client goals and preferences are discussed in a meeting or by asking the client to complete a briefing questionnaire, the findings are defined in a creative brief which is arguably, the most important step in the creative process. In order to write the creative brief, the client’s vision must be clear.

Logo design: Step 2 – Understanding the market | Research

One of the most fascinating aspects of branding work, logo design being a pivotal element of that work, is not only connecting with and understanding the psychology of our clients, their ideas and subjective visual preferences, but also having to learn about the market in which a client’s company is operating.

In order to differentiate a company, the logo design must stand out from the competition yet the logo design must convey the correct visual to be appropriate for its market.

We take a dive into the industry, research competitors, target audiences, USPs (unique selling propositions), to glean inspiration, compiling the results within a visual mood board. We share this mood board with our client, agree and sign off a direction for the logo design to begin.

Logo design: Step 3 – Drawing sketches

Our logo designers begin with black and white sketches, generating the form of the emblem if required and typographical approaches.

The client may have budget for a paid font, or they may prefer to use a free font such as is available on Google Fonts or Adobe fonts.

We present the sketches and discuss with the client and agree on which single direction to take in the next round of design to refine the logo and add colour to it.

If you would like more information about logo design choices, emblems, typography, colour and outputs please contact our logo designers and we would be happy to discuss.

Logo design: Step 4 - Finalising the logo design

In this round we polish the selected logo and work with colour. Finalising the logo may include providing an in-line version of the logo for use where vertical space is limited, for example at the top of a website. Our logo designers will present all suggested colourways for the logo to the client. In this round the logo design is signed off.

Logo design: Step 5 - Outputting the final logo

The logo design has been signed off by the client. In this final round of logo design work, our designers will prepare vector files for print and web; in CMYK, Pantone if required for print and RGB for screens. If required, we will also provide bitmap logos eg. in png formats at various sizes. The output logo package will form the fundamental logo library for the brand. For more information about logo output format, please do contact our team.

Contact our team about Logo design | The creative process
You’re welcome to visit us.

9am – 5pm, Monday- Friday
Call: +44 (0) 7815 777 286

Make an appointment to visit us at our studio in Battersea Power Station.

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“I wanted to thank you for all your hard work. You are incredibly talented, and I am so glad we got to work on this together.”

Edita Sgovio, VP, Yachts and Villas (for Relevance)