*Please note any format terms mentioned that may seem like a foreign language, I do explain what they are, what they are used for, and why ;)
It has come to my attention recently that there are a lot of people out there, especially those starting up new businesses who are not getting everything that they should be from their designer when they enlist their services for a logo design. There are plenty of sites out there these days where you can use your pocket change (no really $5 I hear) and get yourself a brand spanking new logo within hours! How can you refuse, what a deal, what a bargain!? BUT is that logo only supplied to you in a one flat file format, is it in only one size, is it their original work, or is it a clip art file that you may also find on someone else’s logo or store front? Can you use it for print, or is it only good for social media, does it work in a square format?
What happens later when you open a market stall, or a bricks and mortar store, and your printer asks you for a vector** file to create signage? All you have is a RGB jpg*** no bigger than an A5 piece of paper. What happens when you need your logo as a watermark, you have no original file to get rid of the background? These can be the problems you can face later on down the track when you don’t get what you should from your designer.
Alas, it may not be in the Designers package what they supply to you at the end of the project, but it is definitely something you should ask for, and help determine who you choose to work with and hand over your valuable dollars to, and there are definitely formats that you will need, before you enlist a design to work on your logo. Pay once, and get it right the first time. Although it is tempting to pay under $100 for a logo to be designed, keep in mind you are paying for a designers time, and ideas, skill and expertise. If you were to pay a tradesman to fix something in your home, you are paying them for their time, their knowledge, and service, because it is not something that you are a professional at, that you can do yourself. Same goes for the service of design, there is a lot more that just plopping down some type and an image. Your $$$ are important to you and your budget, so you should get exactly what you are paying for, and done correctly.
Firstly, see the Designers work/style if it is something that you feel works with your vision. Ask them how they work e.g. timelines, process (including how many revisions are included in the price / or if unlimited) – this is good to know, so you know what to expect and when. Once you choose them, they should be communicating with you all the information and details that they need from you to create a brief so that you are both on the same page, creating a mood board for you, even better. If concepts created are not on brief you need to express and communicate this as soon as possible, so that you are both back on the right path (some designers will have extra fees if the brief changes at a certain point during the timeline – but this should be stated in their terms & conditions when you first enlist them and start the project).
Once you have approved your final logo, it should then be Artworked. This means that your logo file is properly cleaned up and set up properly (no live type in the file if there is type) colours chosen* and then rolled out into the various file formats you will need.
Below are the general formats that you should have your logo supplied to you –
*If your logo is in colour PMS (Pantone Matching System) colours will be chosen – although it is not always common practise these days as digital printing is a lot better and has a good track record for colour matching – but if you are using your logo on packaging for instance, or certain signage, the printer may require PMS colours. Having a PMS colour means that no matter where you print you will get the same result as they use the Pantone colour to match to. So for example it means that the colours in your logo on your brochure, your business card, your packaging, and your car wrap will all match.
TYPE OF FILES
TYPE OF FORMATS
***RGB – (Red Green Blue) To be use for screen purpose only – web/presentations, never use RGB for print.