The age old saying that “you get what you pay for” couldn’t ring truer when it comes to logo design. Whilst it’s tempting to try to save dollars in the early days of your business, your logo design and branding shouldn’t be where you scrimp.
Whilst crowd-sourcing in general is a super cool concept, #sorrynotsorry, but we just can’t get behind a crowd-sourced logo design.
Imagine if you had to wear just one t-shirt for the rest of your life. You wouldn’t be trying on the cheapest tee on the rack, that’s not quite your size and that you’re pretty sure you saw three people wearing very similar ones last week.
You’d be looking for the highest quality t-shirt. One that’s classic in style, tailored to your body and is going to represent your personality best for years to come. And you wouldn’t be concerned about what it cost because you know it’s an investment – you’re going to wear it for the rest of your life after all!
Luckily, you don’t have to pull a Mark Zuckerberg and wear the same t-shirt everyday.
But your business does have to wear the same logo every day, so it’s vital that you don’t make the mistake of going the budget route.
Here’s five reasons why you should avoid cheap or crowd-sourced logo design at all costs –
1. Plagiarism is rife
A crowd-sourced logo design seems like a great option – you get to choose from a lot of designs from multiple designers and only pay for the final one you want.
Anybody can enter a crowd-sourcing competition. No experience necessary, no portfolio. Your new “designer” likely doesn’t have any actual design skills, but they will often rip-off other’s designs or create logos by lightly editing stock graphics or vectors.
You’re very likely to end up with an un-original logo design (than any real designer will be able to spot as a stock template a mile away). Even worse, you could be in an expensive infringement lawsuit if your new logo has been stolen from someone else.
2. Here today, gone tomorrow?
Your new logo will be EVERYWHERE. Across your website, your business cards, your email signature, your flyers, white papers, social media accounts, email templates etc.
A logo created from a stock graphic/template might look very ‘on-trend’ this month, but it will quickly become outdated and make your brand look tired.<
When you finally realise how much you hate your logo 6-12 months later and decide to invest in a better one; you’ll end up paying more and spending more time to get everything up to date. Not to mention the lack of brand continuity for your customers.
3. Too much choice is tiresome
25, 50 or even hundreds of crowd-sourced designs for free – sounds awesome right?!
Wrong. In fact, a study from New York University showed that “restricting the choice of creative inputs actually enhances creativity.”
The problem is that trying to decide between too many choices is exhausting and we make bad decisions when we are tired. It’s caused by decision fatigue. Your brain can only filter and sort through so many things at once, so even if there is a decent logo within those many designs, you’ll probably miss it anyway.
When you work with a designer one-on-one, whilst they might go through many concepts and sketches; you will likely only see the best 3-5 concepts. This process makes it much easier for you choose effectively, saving you time and make the process far more pleasant.
4. The Package Deal Trap
That $49 offer may sound like a great deal; but being confined to “2 concepts and 1 revision” means there is almost no flexibility or room for error in the design process.
It definitely won’t involve much of your valuable feedback or input.
This cookie-cutter approach almost guarantees you’re getting a logo from a stock website.
5. Organic collaboration
Whilst you’re hiring a designer to use their knowledge and skills to create an amazing design; you know your brand the best and therefore your input is essential throughout the design process.
The best logo design comes from an an organic relationship with clear communication between you and your designer.
A great designer will be an asset to your brand ongoing, so choosing quality from the start means you have someone that knows your branding inside out for future design work.
Being familiar with a brand’s guideline and aesthetic makes the briefing process simpler and the design process often faster, saving you money down the track.
In other words, don’t by the oddly fitting t-shirt off the rack.