As I’ve mentioned before, logos are essential to creating a great brand, so you want to make sure that the graphic designer making your logo is the best available.
Whether you’re hiring your logo designer in-house or as a contractor, you need to make sure that they’ve got the chops before letting them touch your brand. You can do a lot of this even before setting up an interview. Just going through the logo designer’s website will already give you many clues to how suitable he is for your project.
Sample works are the best way to assess a graphic designer’s skills. In it you can see the designer’s style, talent, and depth of experience. Here are some other things to look for in his logo design portfolio as well:
Size. How big is the graphic designer’s portfolio? If it’s not that big, chances are that he doesn’t have much experience in the field yet, since many graphic designers fill out their portfolios as their business grows. If the portfolio is small, but you like what you see, then email the designer and ask to see if he has any more relevant work.
The “relevant” part is important, as you should only be looking at logos. If he makes beautiful websites, but average logos, then he’s probably not the designer you need for this project.
Variety. When you look at a logo designer’s past logos, check to see if there is a lot of variety in their work. What are the different brands they have handled? Do all the logos look the same, or does his portfolio show a range of styles, colors, and treatments?
The greater the variety, the greater the chance of him developing a unique logo for your business. Stay away from portfolios that look like they were all based off the same design.
There are some logo designers that only do logos. They have a much greater chance of developing the perfect logo for your business, but their specialization means that they charge higher rates to do so.
You need to think about what you want to get out of your relationship with the graphic designer. Are you only going to be using them for your logo? Or do you have other projects in mind for them as well? If the latter, you should probably compromise and go to a generalist. Of course, if you want to hire a logo specialist first, then move on to another graphic designer for your other projects, you can do that too.
Logo creation involves a lot of back-and-forth between designer and client, and there will be a lot of discussion as you two discuss ideas and share feedback. Being able to speak and write well will help ease this process and help you ensure that the graphic designer knows exactly what you want.
Communication goes two ways. While you do have to check that the graphic designer can make himself understood, you have to make sure that you can communicate properly, as well.
A good graphic designer does not just create something out of nothing. They have to use a whole lot of supporting information about your business, your target market, your design templates, and the like. They will probably have a design process of some sort in place in order to gather, assess, and act on the information you give him. This brief will help them to create a logo that perfectly fits your business and expresses the right message to your customers.
Logo designs are rarely perfect on the first pass, so the graphic designer will also have established procedures for reviewing design studies and going through revisions. These procedures are here for both your benefit and his, so it’s easy to backtrack to previous designs and keep the project flowing in an organized fashion.