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Home » Branding, identity design, Logo Design

I’m Stuck with a Bad Logo – Now What?

Submitted by on May 12, 2011 – 12:00 pmNo Comment

Way back when you started your business you didn’t have a lot of money, so you cut a few corners on your logo. Either you designed it yourself (and you’re not a designer) or you bought a pre-made logo from one of those $99 logo websites or possibly you hired your cousin’s sister-in-law’s kid ’cause she’s “good at art and stuff”.

What do you do?
Having a bad logo will definitely hold you back when you’re looking to take your business to the next level. You may not even realize you have a bad logo, but you find that you can’t seem to gain traction with your brand.

There are two approaches to changing your logo, each with their own merits and challenges.

The first is to toss the old one and start from scratch. The advantage to this approach is you get the strong, targeted logo you wanted right away (assuming you hired a good designer).

The problem with this is that maybe you have a lot of clients who won’t recognize you when they see that new, splashy, completely different logo from the one you had. With this approach, you’ll also need to launch a campaign to existing customers telling them all about your new look. And depending on what you offer, you may need to reassure them with copy like, “brand new look, same great service.”

Depending on how big your company is or if your reach is wide, this could be an expensive endeavor. You might need to send a printed direct mail piece in advance letting them know about the upcoming change, and follow up with a second after the launch. You’ll want to announce it in emails and on your website and on your Facebook page if you have one. You might even need to include new tv and radio spots, if you’ve advertised there in the past.

The second option is if you have a good idea, but a bad, or dated looking execution. You can evolve this type of logo over time, making small changes over the course of a year or several years. This solution doesn’t require the big announcement and expense of the first option, but it requires patience and an ongoing relationship with your designer.

When is a bad logo a good thing
Does your logo look dated and cheap? If you’re in the discount business, or sell cheap products, a bad, dated logo can actually help you. That’s because it’s conveying just how cheap you are, which is what we call a selling feature.

Ultimately, you don’t have to put up with a bad logo. The sooner you change it the sooner you can start building and positioning your brand exactly where you it.

Reprinted with special permission from the Shimmin Design blog.

Written by Melissa Shimmin
Melissa Shim­min is an award-winning designer who has been help­ing com­pa­nies both big and small cre­ate, evolve and strengthen their iden­ti­ties, brand­ing and mar­ket­ing col­lat­eral for more than 15 years. And yet, Melissa is more than just a designer: she takes a big pic­ture per­spec­tive, com­bin­ing marketing strat­egy and copy­writ­ing with design to cre­ate stronger, more impact­ful brand­ing and iden­tity for the com­pa­nies she part­ners with. Check out her work at Shimmin Design.

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