Tips For Creating The Perfect Logo

Various logos drawn on sketchpad.

 

 

 

 

 

 

We live in a very visual world these days. While it is important to not judge a book by its cover, it can sometimes be hard not to when Instagram and dating apps have become things we look at every day. That said, having a logo that really speaks to your brand is critical. It’s a visual that tells people what you’re all about. You don’t want people to swipe right when they come across it so here are our biggest tips on how to create the perfect logo for your brand.

Ask yourself, what’s my brand’s personality?

Your logo should communicate your business’ personality. A good way to get to the bottom of this is to answer the question, how would you want your ideal customer to describe you? What are your business’ values?

Get inspiration.

What are some of your favorite logos? What are logos you don’t care for? Create a mood board of your favorite logos and one of your least favorite ones. Doing this can help you identify you what you like and what you don’t when it comes to design. Doing this can help you see if you want your logo to be classic, vintage, modern, minimalistic, or fun? If can also help you determine if you like certain colors and want them associated with your brand.

Keep it simple.

You want your logo to be easy on the eye. Don’t add to much detail. The most recognizable brands have simplistic logos. Check out this post which shows the evolution of McDonald’s logo.

McDonald’s original logo from 1940 is very different from how it looks today. Back then, it had black font and read ‘McDonald’s Famous Barbecue.’ In 1953, McDonald’s incorporated their then mascot, a chef name Speede, into their logo. Seven years later in 1960, McDonald’s  adopted its iconic red and yellow colors into its logo and dropped Speede. It added its name underneath the logo. In 2006, McDonald’s made their logo even simpler. For the past twelve years, it’s just now known for its’ golden arch.

Choose your colors carefully.

Color psychology is the study of how colors impact human behavior and emotion. Different colors can provoke different responses. For example:

Red is known for being an extreme color. It represents loudness, love, violence, anger, and adventure.

Orange is synonymous with joy, warmth, originality, enthusiasm, and creativity.

Because yellow is the brightest color, it represents happiness, optimism, enlightenment and clarity.

Green is an interesting color. On the hand it is the perfect color to use for eco-friendly brands as it makes people think of nature, growth, harmony, and fertility. On the flip side, green can also make people think of money so it’s another good option for financial businesses.

Blue symbolizes calmness and trust.

You get purple when you mix blue and red together. As such, this color is associated with power, royalty, and wealth.

It’s hard to not think of femininity when you think of pink, but it can also translate to sweet, playful, romantic, charming, and tenderness.

Brown provokes a sense of earthiness, rustic, strength, and reliability.

Black is a great color to use if your brand offers something that is sleek, modern, and luxurious.

White symbolizes clean, modern, and minimalism.

Gray can help you achieve a mature, classic, and serious look.

Make sure the logo can scale.

No matter what size the logo is scaled to, you want to make sure it is able to stand out. You don’t want it to be blurry if it’s reduced to a small size. You want people to understand it.

Consider using a symbol.

Symbols are powerful. We can’t deny that when we see a swoosh symbol we think of Nike, or when we see an apple icon our mind wanders to Apple. Maybe there is a simple symbol related to your business that you can design and incorporate into your logo.

Do public testing.

You may think your logo looks great, but what does the public think? Get a test group together and show them a few logo designs that you have. A test group can provide you constructive criticism and new ideas on what’s working and what isn’t. Sometimes it’s good to get out of your head and soundboard your ideas off of others.

Want some more logo inspiration? Check out some logos we’ve designed over the years.

B2B Marketing Tips

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Have you just started a B2B company? Or are you new to marketing for a B2B company? Marketing for a B2B company is different than marketing for a B2C, but it’s just as important. Here are some marketing tips to help you grow your B2B company and how to offer value to your target audience.

Write a blog.


You want to have helpful content that solves your audience’s problems, and a blog is a great way to make yourself an industry expert. To get going on your business blog, ask yourself, what are the most common problems my audience has? What are my company’s goals and how can I write about them?  


Update blog posts that do well.


Sometimes a blog post does really well. You get a lot impressions and comments. People are engaging with the post because it offers value.


But somewhere down the line, you go back to that blog post that did so well and notice it is a bit outdated. You still want that piece of content to be valuable, so update that blog post with the most relevant information so that it continues to rank well on search engines and gain traction.

 

Do video marketing.


Blogging isn’t the only way to provide value to your clients. As this article from Forbes explores, video is the future of media on the web. This article reports that Facebook is prioritizing video content more than ever and that video is almost as big as mobile. You could make videos that showcase your products and/or services and tutorials that visually help businesses solve their problems.  

 

Start a podcast.


Podcasts have exploded over the last few years due in large part to the rise of smartphones. Podcasts are wonderful because they can help you expand your expertise and network. This is especially true if a big portion of your podcast involves interviewing guests. When you have a guest on your show, they’ll promote it to their community, who will then want to check you out. Or in turn, if you invite a client onto your podcast, it can build a stronger rapport with them because you’re promoting them and having a meaningful conversation with them. A podcast is a lot of work (this article from Search Engine Land dives into that), but it can really help strengthen your content marketing and grow your B2B company.  

 

Use LinkedIn.


If you’re a B2B company, you have to be on LinkedIn. It is the outline platform for growing your network and finding business opportunities. Check out this blog post we wrote about how to get the most out of LinkedIn.

 

Treat your audience as people.


It’s easy when you run a B2B company to forget that your targeted audience has life outside of their job. They’re people just like you. They go to their kids’ Saturday morning soccer games, go on vacations, and binge watch Netflix just like you! Humanize your marketing. Profile your staff and share what makes each employee unique. Show your audience a behind the scenes look at your business. Show them how you make your products and/or create your services.  Humanizing your marketing is a must have as it’ll help you connect with your audience on a deeper level.

Do you market for a B2B company? Do you agree with our tips? What are some tips you do that we may have left out? Let us know in the comments.

How To Build An Agency: An Interview With Mike Sperling, Founder of Sperling Interactive

Mike Sperling, founder of Sperling Interactive

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

September 15, 2008 was a big and scary day for Mike Sperling. That day was his first day working full-time for himself after working at the Eagle Tribune for a number of years. Not only that, but that was the day the Lehman Brothers collapsed, causing the great recession of 2008. It was time of uncertainty, and Mike knew then he’d have to give his new business his all in order to flourish.

Mike’s business has come a long way in ten years. It’s no longer a one-man business. It’s now an agency located in a beautiful office on Derby Square in Salem, Massachusetts with 20 employees and 500 clients. With 98% of businesses failing within 10 years, Mike knows a lot about what it takes to make a business work so today we decided to interview him on how to build an agency.

What do you wish someone had told you when you were first starting out?

I wish someone told me the importance of setting boundaries. When you’re a business owner, you could literally spend all your time working, but it’s not healthy. Setting boundaries ensures you don’t burn out and have a better work/life balance.

What’s the hardest part about running Sperling Interactive?

Dealing with the anxiety of running a business. There are hundreds of decisions to be made everyday, some large and some small, and it can be overwhelming.

How do you provide good customer service to your clients?

I believe customers should feel important and have their needs listened to and acted on as soon as possible. I always try and hear my clients out. I think another way my company exhibits good customer service is we answer the phone when it rings as opposed to a computer. I feel this adds a nice human and personal touch for our clients.

What is your biggest tip for how to grow an agency?

I believe in slow calculated growth. There is no reason to take on debt or additional risk to scale the agency quickly.  Slow growth enables sustainability.

What’s something everyone should know about owning an agency?

While owning an agency is a lot of hard work, it is also a lot of fun. I get to think creatively and analytically all the time. If you’re someone who likes thinking these two ways, owning an agency might be a good fit for you.

A lot of people start an agency after having some success freelancing, how can one transition their solo career into a full-blown agency?

I would tell someone who is interested in starting an agency to take their time and to evaluate who they want to serve and what they stand for. The biggest difference between a freelancer and a business is a business has a targeted audience and a mission statement.  At Sperling Interactive, our targeted audience is businesses and nonprofits who want to reach and retain their targeted audience through custom marketing that speak to their brand. Our values are creative excellence, always going the extra mile for our clients, working like a family, and being accepting of others.

Click here to learn more about our staff.

Sperling Interactive's office.

Why We Use WordPress Instead Of Squarespace

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We often get asked by business owners and marketers what content management system they should use to build their website: WordPress or Squarespace. These are two of the largest and most popular current website tools, and our answer is always WordPress. WordPress is the content management system we primarily use to make our clients’ websites (check out this blog post to read about the other content management systems we use). In today’s blog post, we’ll be exploring why we use WordPress instead Squarespace.

Before we jump into everything, let’s dive into defining WordPress and Squarespace.

What is WordPress?


WordPress is a website builder that was founded in 2003. There are two types of WordPress- WordPress.org (where you self-host your site) and WordPress.com, which is when you pay WordPress to host your site.

What is Squarespace?


Squarespace is also website builder that was founded in 2003.  You may be familiar with the company as they have been doing a lot work recently to advertise themselves on podcasts and even the Superbowl. In May of 2018, they had up to 60 template options. It’s a popular platform for creative like bloggers, photographers, artists, and musicians.

Now that we’ve covered some basic info about the two, let’s discuss why we prefer WordPress here at Sperling Interactive.

WordPress is free.


WordPress is a free and open-source platform and Squarespace is not. When you sign up with Squarespace, you are hosting your site on Squarespace’s server. Using WordPress enables us to host our clients on one of the premiere hosting platforms, Amazon Web Services.

It also costs $12 a month to have a 20 page Squarespace website and $18 per month for a website with unlimited pages.

Editing & Coding Made Easy on WordPress

Every single WordPress website comes with a GPL 2.0 license, which means you can change the code as much as you’d like, including the functionalities of plugins and themes. Squarespace on the other hand, doesn’t offer this type of license to its users. You can only do certain edits to add small customizations to sites.  

When you sign up with Squarespace, you also have to choose a template. WordPress does offer templates (they have over 5,000), but if you want something truly custom, you can achieve that too. Squarespace does offer beautiful templates, but many of them are highly-photo based. If you don’t have high definition-photography, the templates can fall flat. Check out 1:15 of this video.

According to Website Builder Expert, WordPress does have a steeper learning curve but is a more flexible platform. We agree with this.

WordPress is Unlimited


With WordPress, there is no limit to how many times you redo your website or how many sites you’d like to build. When you sign up with Squarespace, you are limited to one site and are stuck within the confines  of your template. If you want to create another website, you have to sign up for another premium subscription.

WordPress Has Better Ecommerce Options


Nearly every website we build has an ecommerce shop to it, even if the business is a product-based business. A lot of businesses host events and need to sell tickets. The unfortunate thing about Squarespace is their ecommerce is only supported in the US, UK, Canada, and Ireland. WordPress, on the other hand, has a global presence. It also wasn’t until very recently that Squarespace started accepting PayPal.

Some of the Largest Websites use WordPress


WordPress is the most popular website and blog creation tool, powering 30% of websites (that’s 10 million websites). Squarespace has fewer websites, with an estimated 1 million. Not only that, some of the biggest blogs, news outlets, music sites, Fortune 500 companies, and celebrity websites- The New York Times, BBC America, MTV News, Beyoncé, Etsy, and the White House– were created in WordPress.

If you want to build a custom website for your business, WordPress is the content management system you should use. Our mission as a business is to create websites that truly represent our clients’ brand and aesthetic and because WordPress is so customizable we’ve gravitated towards it as a content management system we generally use.

If you’re a creative solopreneur, have amazing photography, and don’t find you need a truly custom website, Squarespace may be a better option for you.  

When it all comes down to it, you must think about your business and prioritize your needs. For larger businesses who have a lot of competition, having something completely custom is important as they need a way to stand out from the crowd. A custom site is perfect or this.

Do you agree with article? What content management system do you use? What do you like about it? Share your thoughts in the comments! We’d love to hear from you.