Top 10 questions to ask your logo customer – The most important aspect of the logo design creation process is collecting input from the client. It also happens to be one of the trickiest. In fact, sometimes it is more tricky than the actual conceptualization.
We have created 100s of logos over the years and might have worked with clients of every kind. Most often than not, we deal with clients who take their branding seriously and would have put some thought into how their logo should look before approaching a company like ours. But occasionally we do encounter clients who consider the logo design process as a black box and there are several logo design related myths that you might have to debunk.
Such clients do not usually have any input to provide the designer in terms of style or substance. They come with the hope that armed with the company name and the nature of the business the logo designer will be able to come up with a stunning logo that is eye-catching, full of impact, cutting edge, modern and memorable (in short a great logo design).
So as a logo designer it is very important that you get as much input from the client as possible. I have listed the top 10 questions to ask the client. You should also explain clearly how you work and what the process is so that the client’s expectations are clear. Please post a comment below if you have any other questions that you think should not be missed.
1. What is the exact text of the logo?
It is very important that you establish the exact that the client would like to see in the logo. You will have to explain to the client that changes to the wording could have an effect on the concepts and therefore the client would need to nail down the exact words in the logo before any design work begins.
2. Any Slogan or Tagline?
It is also vital to find out if the client wants to see a slogan or tag line in the logo and the level of integration they are hoping for. Some client prefers to see the tag line as a separate entity and placed somewhere below the actual logo design. Yet others might want the tag incorporated into the design itself.
3. What is the Nature of the business, service or product?
This is a more usual question that all designers would be made aware of but I included it here for sake of completeness.
4. Who is the Target Market?
This is a very important piece of information and would help the logo designer understand who this logo would most likely be exposed. This would then help the designer try and envision the kind of message that might be appropriate to that target audience.
For example, if you have two companies called “Black Hawks Construction” and one caters to the residential market and the other to the commercial market, the two logos would have to be quite different in terms of the usage of colors, fonts. icons and layout. A corporate looking logo with possibly an iconic representation of a hawk might be appropriate to the commercial market whereas a more friendly version with an icon representing a house or a tree or perhaps even line art of a construction worker or a construction that might be more appropriate to the domestic market.
5. Any Competitors?
It is useful to find out who the client thinks are their direct competitors. Of course, a logo designer would also have to conduct their own research in terms of looking at as many corporate identities as possible in the same market to understand what the current trends are.
6. Any Creative strategy?
This is the tricky bit. A lot of clients might not have thought about their logo at all and would not be in a position to tell the designer what they are looking for. Often they might shrug their shoulders and say “I am not a designer! That is why I have come to you”.
Fair enough. However often we observe that after a few concepts are presented to the same client, they would then come back saying that they had actually expected something else. It is better to find out beforehand what that “something else” is. You should explain to the client that it would help a lot to understand what look and feel or logo style the client might prefer. Or they could perhaps tell the designer what kind of images or icon they believe might look good. This leads to the next point.
7. Any examples of logos the client likes?
Following on from the last point, it would be very useful to find out what logos your client likes. This could be from your portfolio or perhaps from out there. Invite the client to spend some time on the web and list a few logos that they fancy. This help the designer understand the style the client prefers.
There are many styles of logos there. You have the simple iconic logos, the illustrative logos, text-based logos, line art logos, 3D logos, web 2.0 logos and more.
8. Any examples of logos the client does NOT like?
Knowing what the client does not like is a good way to prevent working on styles that might ultimately get thrown out by the client. However, the logo designer must also use his or her judgment and not be afraid to show a concept which might use an icon or image the client said they did not like. Perhaps with the proper treatment, the designer could show the client a new angle or perspective and help the client understand how that particular image or icon might actually help the brand.
9. What are the Preferred colors?
It is also important the client has some idea of the colors that they would like to see in the logo concepts. Agreed, the client might not be in a position to appreciate the importance of the various colors in terms of how people or consumers might respond or behave towards, but it would help if they indicate a preference to a few colors.
10. Where will the logo be most used?
It is also quite important to find out where the client is most likely going to use their logo. The medium of usuage helps in making decisions regarding the use of gradients, defining the layout and more.