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Logo Design: How Much Should It Cost?

Updated on August 13, 2013

Logo designs can cost next to nothing or can cost millions of dollars. But if we exclude the big boys who are prepared to spend millions on updating their logos, let’s consider the average start-up who wants a great new logo,and look at some of the options open to them:

  • They could ask a friend who enjoys playing on Photoshop to rustle up a colourful logo. Cost: a bottle of wine or box of chocolates
  • They could go to a cheap outsourcing company such as where people offer their logo design services from just $5. Cost: $5 plus a bit more for fast turn-around time and provision of the logo in various formats. This is an example from the website. Remember – you get what you pay for.

  • They could use a logo template such as those found on numerous websites. Cost: $15
  • They could do a bit of crowdsourcing by running a logo design competition and waiting for entries to pour in. Cost: whatever is offered as the prize. When the Zambia Tourist Board wanted a new logo, they ran a competition and received 956 different logos. After much deliberation, the final logo was chosen. Some people may like the mix of bold, primary colours, but there isn’t much else to say about it. It looks as though someone spent about 10 minutes on the design, which looks as though it was hand drawn by an 8 year old.

So it’s fair to say that while these prices are gloriously low, the final logo may not actually be what the start-up wants or needs. A logo is more than a pretty little squiggle. It should reflect the company, its culture and the products for sale. It has to be appropriate to the business, must last the test of time and be far more memorable than those of the competition. And it shouldn’t be memorable for the wrong reason! A-Style seems to be more than happy with its logo, and you can even purchase a T-shirt emblazoned with it. But look a bit more closely.... doesn’t it look a little bit like two people up to ....well, take a look for yourself!

A logo is the crux of the visual brand identity of the company. All marketing materials from business card to website, from brochures to advertisements will be in line with the style of the logo. A logo therefore is the single most important part of a company’s brand identity: get it right and all other design concepts will flow from it; get it wrong and the resultant designs will always fail to make the grade. Therefore a start-up should not be trying to cut corners when it comes to their logo design – they should be considering the return on investment. They need to work with professional brand designers.

A professional brand designer will of course charge more than an amateur designer. But they will create the right logo for the business that will be unique, timeless and appropriate without any double entendres. It will be scalable, look just as good in black & white as in colour, and make a great first impression. Before they even start to get creative, a professional team will

  • take the time to understand the company, its products and where it wants to pitch itself in the marketplace
  • research the competitors to find the right marketing niche for the start-up

Costs of a professional logo design

The cost of any logo design project will depend on three main areas:

1. Complexity of the logo required: from a simple wordmark to a more complicated emblem.

2. Turnaround time: if the logo is required quickly, the client will pay more.

3. Expertise and qualifications of the designer.

Clients can expect to pay from around $300 for a simple logo to $3000 for a far more complicated design. When a start-up wants to work with a professional logo designer, they need to request a quote and ensure the package includes the following:

  • 2 or 3 concepts to choose from
  • revisions on the preferred concept
  • provision of the final logo in colour, colour reversed, black & white, and greyscale
  • provision of various formats of the logo (bitmap and vector) and in different resolutions

It’s no surprise that a professionally designed logo will cost more than one designed via a cheap outsourcing route or by a friend. A good quality logo is essential to form the basis of a company brand. A professional and eye-catching logo will help sell the company and its products. Conversely a poor logo can at best be overlooked, and at worst find itself emblazoned on logo design websites as an example of a substandard or comical logo. Considered like this, several hundred dollars for a logo design is truly an excellent return on investment.

Copyright 2013 Michelle Collins. New Design Group Inc.


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