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The Beginner’s Guide to Logo Design.

Part Five

Choosing the right font and colors—putting it all together.

In this section, we finally pull all the elements together to create your logo.

Before we go on, however, take a minute to review what you’ve learned from the previous two sections: the ideas you want to associate with your logo and the kind of logo (iconic, typographic or combination) that you want to create. Today we’ll use that to create your new logo.

Step 1: Pick a logo icon.

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If you have decided to create a combination logo (we generally recommend this to small business owners), the first step is to consider the ideas you want to associate with your logo (from the section on positioning). Can the idea be represented literally or would you be better served with an abstract icon that can represent more than one idea?

Once you know the answer, you have two options. You can work with a designer to create a logo that matches your vision. Or you can use design software like the app here at Logomaker.com and choose a professionally designed icon available in the application.

Because this guide is designed for the do-it-yourselfer, we are going to describe the process of using the Logomaker design tool. If you would prefer to work directly with a designer but don’t know one, email us at support@logomaker.com and we’ll put you in touch with one or two that we recommend.

Now click here to lauch the Logomaker design tool (requires Flash) and you’ll see a list of industries. Click on the industry closest to your business idea, then select either a letter-based icon, symbol-based icon or an abstract icon. From there you can search through hundreds of choices to find a symbol that will work well with your business name.

If you can’t find exactly what you’re looking for, consider widening your search (you can use the search box at top right). Remember, an abstract logo in your industry may work well as an accent for your company name. Choosing an attractive graphic that matches the personality, service, product or name of your company is a core component of making a great logo. But that doesn’t mean you have to box yourself in with a literal representation of your name.

If may take a bit of practice and some creativity to try to figure out how an abstract icon can represent your brand. Try thinking in terms of feelings and ideas, like speed or progress. Maybe you can’t find the perfect image of a racecar or cheetah, but something abstract like curved lines or a swoosh could create a sense of motion or speed for your design.

Step 2: Add your product name.

Once you have an icon selected, it’s time to add your company or product name. If you’re using the Logomaker design tool, this is easy. Simply type the name into one (or both) of the text boxes and choose a font that matches the style of your icon.

Step 3: Changing colors, size and layout.

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With Logomaker’s design software, it’s easy to make adjustments to the design of your logo. On the lower right hand side is an “Object Properties” list where you can rotate, adjust the size or color an icon, or a line of text. You can also delete any unwanted items.

You can increase or decrease the size of the text (your product or company name) depending on how you want to emphasize it. First select the line of text or the icon, and then click one of the arrows to make the item bigger or smaller. As you might expect, the larger arrow pointing up increases the size, while the smaller arrow pointing down will decrease the size of the object.

If you want to rotate an object or line of text, simply choose the item and then select the circular arrows to the right of rotation under Object Properties. Naturally, if you select the circular arrows pointing to the right, the item will rotate clockwise, and if you select the arrow to the left, the item will rotate counterclockwise.

Once you’ve made your adjustments and have a logo you love, click save and you’re done. You can either download the free web logo HTML snippet for use on your website, or you can purchase high-resolution files to use for printing. The high-resolution files you’ll receive include an EPS file that you can change and update at any time.

Obviously, if you are working with a designer, they will tackle most of these tasks for you. They’ll create the icon, recommend fonts and colors, and present you with several options for your final decision (expect to pay between $250-2000 for their expertise).

Want to learn more? Download our free ebook: How To Create a Great Logo with Logomaker.

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The instructions here are meant to be a simple description of the process of designing a logo with Logomaker. If you want a more in-depth description of how to use our software, as well as several examples of logos built using Logomaker and the thinking behind them, click this link to download your free ebook: How to Create a Great Logo with Logomaker. It describes all the ins and outs of creating a logo with our online software.

A few mistakes to avoid with your logo design.

Before you finish the design of your logo, here’s a short list of things to leave out of your logo. Keeping away from these mistakes will help your logo look more professional and clean—and will help it be more memorable to your customers.

1. Leave out legal phrases like Inc., Corp., LLC and LLP.

Big company logos don’t include them, so why would you?

2. Taglines.

Taglines change, but if you do things right, your logo won’t. So just leave your tagline out of the logo design.

3. Addresses, phone numbers and website URLs.

Again, these things can change and they’re not part of your brand image. Include them in your advertising but not your logo design. They just make things look crowded and complicated.

Try it yourself now.

That’s it. Now that you know what to do, it’s time to put your new skills to work. Click here to open Logomaker’s free design software. There’s no risk, so try it now!