Does my business need a logo?

Want to know the biggest myth about logos?

Most people believe that having a professionally designed logo makes them legitimate or successful.

But surprise! That’s not necessarily true.

Need proof? Take a look at DrudgeReport.com or Craigslist.org. Both have pretty terrible logos, but their businesses work.

So how do you know whether or not your business needs a logo?

Allow me to introduce my patent-pending Does-My-Business-Need-A-Logo Test (*cough* logo forthcoming *cough*).

Let’s start with question #1.

1. Does your business have customers?

A couple of years ago, I built a startup. And oh my, it had the perfect name, the perfect logo, the perfect mascot, the perfect website design, and the perfect treasure trove of puns that tied the whole brand experience up in a beautiful bow.

But it failed. Why?

I forgot rule number one of any business: have customers.

It’s all too easy to get wrapped up in the glitz and glamour of branding, design, video, and marketing. To be fair, it’s very exciting! But it doesn’t keep the lights on. Customers—and sales in turn—do.

So, make sure your business actually has customers. People ready to give you money. Or better yet, people currently giving you money.

Because, without sales, a logo doesn’t matter.

Sure, sometimes you do need a logo and brand before you open your doors (if you’re a high-end restaurant, for example). But by and large, you should have customers first.

If you have a business like that, or already have sales or customers, proceed to question #2.

2. Do people actually care about your logo?

If you’re adding value and people are paying for your service, perhaps you don’t need a logo at all. Perhaps just the name in a simple font will do.

I’ve met a lot of amazing small business owners who have a very simple logo (of which they are unnecessarily ashamed) that does exactly what it needs to do.

On the other hand, if you get a few smirks and funny looks when customers see your logo, it might be a good idea to invest in a professionally developed logo.

Why? You guessed it. Because it’s probably costing you sales.

This is especially true of high-end brands. If you’re selling wristwatches for $300, and your logo says ‘two-bit timepiece,’ you’re probably missing out on sales. That’s when a timelessly elegant logo and brand that says ‘prestige’ could be a wise investment.

After all, brand is what gives Nike shoes and Apple computers their magical aura of ‘extra value.’ You know, the thing that makes you say, “take my money.”

The key here is… 

If brand is important to your customers—and important to your customer’s perception of the value of your product—invest in a professional logo.

Punchline

If you’re running a successful business that has its own name, you’ll probably need a logo of some sort. But unless brand is important to your customer, you probably don’t need it to be perfect or designed by Jackson Pollock.

Actually, can you imagine what that logo would look like?


Have any logo horror stories or something else you’d like to know? Would love to hear your thoughts below!

Stay tuned for more information on what to know before picking a logo designer and how to find a designer that is right for your business or personal brand!

One thought on “Does my business need a logo?

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