Why I Won't Design “Just a Logo”
Over the last year I've received quite a few inquiries from people looking for “just a logo.” It seems like a reasonable enough request, right? To some designers it absolutely is, and while I used to work this way at my former jobs, I now turn these projects away. I may be missing out on some business, but it's in service of a greater goal and vision for how I want to work with my clients.
So why don't I offer a logo-only package?
Who Wants “Just a Logo?”
Before I dig into my reasons, let's take a look at the types of clients that make this kind of request. I've found they generally fall into one of two camps.
First, there's the small business that can't afford a more in-depth branding process. Understandably, they want a beautiful face for their business so they can get noticed and build engagement with their customers. Due to their lack of funds, they want to omit the seemingly unnecessary brand discovery and strategy portion of the process in service of a smaller price tag.
The issue with this approach is that without the in-depth research and strategy behind it, the results are lackluster and the logo becomes just an empty facade. It won't encompass the brand's values or channel its story into something truly unique and compelling. Rather, it will just act as an ornament for their brand—one which they'll likely outgrow sooner than expected since there isn't much substance behind it.
Then there's the business who just wants the logo created as quickly as possible so they can get it out of the way and check it off their list. They “don't need the discovery or strategy” portion of the process because they've “already done it for [me].” They just want to pass off their brief and have me churn out something to match their specs as soon as I can.
The branding process should be an immersive and collaborative journey—not a heartless transaction.
The problem with this approach is that this business views the designer (me) as more of a technician than a collaborative partner. What they're looking for is an impersonal transaction they can just get over with. They don't believe in the power of branding to create an incredible experience and just want an image they can stick in the corner of their website. The type of work that results from this lacks the heart and soul that makes brands truly great.
Instead of offering a logo-only package, I advocate a holistic approach. I believe in building a strong, meaningful foundation for my clients' brands—together. The discovery part of the process is when I truly get to know them, so it's absolutely essential that we complete this phase together. After all, this is when I come to understand their story and vision so I can translate that spark.
I'm a firm believer that a brand's identity is much more than just the logo—it's the strategy behind it and the way it comes to life through each piece of collateral. In a strong brand identity, each piece is unique yet they all feel at home together. I only offer the comprehensive identity packages for this reason, because by digging deep into brand strategy and extending the brand to collateral up front I can more fully think through each aspect of the design and how it will be used. This makes for a brand that's stronger, more versatile, and longer lasting.
We're In This Together
Moreover, the branding process should be an immersive, and collaborative journey—not a heartless transaction. It's a journey we take together as I guide my clients through a sea of uncertainty toward a stunningly strategic identity. I want to be a partner for my clients in this process—a confidante—and I want them to be as excited about working with me as I am with them.
Not Ready to Hire a Brand Design Partner?
Granted, I understand that some businesses aren't ready to hire a brand design professional just yet, and for others it's unrealistic to think they could hire a designer for each new piece of collateral. Sometimes there are things you just have to do yourself, at least for now.
That's why starting in 2017 I'll be launching a series of courses and products that will empower you to begin building a beautiful and compelling brand yourself! I've got lots of goodies in the works, so be sure to subscribe so you can stay in the loop for my latest launches and offerings. You can even complete this survey to help me build the best products possible (I'll be sending something special to those that do)!
Are you positively bursting to work together, but you're not quite there yet? I completely understand needing to save before committing to an investment like your brand identity. As you prepare to take this exciting step I'm happy to answer any questions you have, and I'm sending you all my best vibes for the exciting months ahead. I can't wait to hear how your business has grown, and I'll be keeping my fingers crossed that we have the chance to work together soon!