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Logos are extraordinarily important because they serve as a visual representation of your company and are a vital part of your overall brand image. A potential customer may choose whether or not to engage with your brand by the look of your logo. Many companies start out with a low budget and don’t have their initial logos professionally designed, then they limp along with a low quality logo for years. Having a logo that doesn’t help sell your brand can seriously jeopardize the success of your business. But how do you know when you need a new logo? Here are seven sure-fire signs it’s time to get a new logo:

1. Your logo looks dated

Just as you most likely wouldn’t wear what you wore in the 1980’s to a meeting today, your logo can appear outdated. Graphic styles and colors change and if you don’t keep up to date your logo will eventually look like it’s from another decade. Some brands can get away with an old-fashioned or antique look, if their brand actually is decades old and that is part of their brand message and marketing strategy, (think Smucker’s Jam for instance). For the majority of companies though staying up to date visually is imperative and let’s your customers know you are on top of your game and care how you are perceived.

2. Your logo isn’t easily identifiable

It’s easy to get carried away and choose a logo that is very detailed, thereby fully embodying your brand message. However, if your logo is so complex that it is not easy to read, you’ve gone too far. Your target audience has maybe a second or two to glance at and absorb your logo. If it is not automatically recognizable and easy to read then it’s too complex. Simplify it or get a new one.

3. Your logo is not interesting to look at

Equally as important as being identifiable, your logo must also be interesting to look at. This is why it’s strongly recommended that you hire a qualified creative professional to create your new logo. A skilled designer is experienced at combining shapes, colors and fonts to create logos that are visually stimulating. This is not easily done. With all the noise we are bombarded with creating something that cuts through the visual clutter cannot be achieved by just anyone. With design and marketing, as with most things, you get what you pay for. Leave it to the pros.

4. Your logo is crushed by your competition’s

Unsure as to whether or not you need a new logo? Check out those of your competitors. Not sure how to do that? Just google the type of business you have and your locale and see what comes up. Visit the websites and see how your competitors are represented. If they have more professional sites and logos that are better than yours then it’s time to get a new logo pronto! You can be certain that potential clients are also googling, and if you look shabby, you’re losing business.

These are all important points, but keep reading for even more ways to evaluate your logo.

5. Your logo doesn’t work across all media

Things have changed a lot in the past ten years. Social media is now a vital part of most marketing strategies and every company needs an attractive, well-functioning, easy to navigate website (more about this coming up soon in another post). As a result you need a logo that works across a variety of media. Long skinny logos, and super tall logos, generally do not easily adapt to all the different platforms. Colors also need to work well across media, from print to web. Subtle variations in hues can look flat on screen. Fonts need to reconsidered. Anything too ornate or too thin will lose it’s detail and look grainy in many applications. A successful logo must be designed with a whole spectrum of media applications in mind. Remember, you will need vector files, or line art, of your logo to use it in many places, so don’t accept a logo created in Word or any software which is not specifically manufactured for logo creation.

6. Your logo is attracting the wrong audience

If you find that the type of clients who are contacting you are not what you want, then your logo is not doing its job! Your logo is the first thing most potential customers will see that represents you, the front door to your business. If the wrong people are walking through that door, then you need a new door! A cheaply designed logo will attract customers who are hoping your lack of spending on your own appearance will translate into low prices for them. This may work for some businesses, say a diner that spits out 1,000 meals a day for $5 a plate, where volume is all that matters. But for the majority of businesses a logo that denotes quality is crucial to attracting the right type of clients.

7. Your target audience has changed

Businesses grow and evolve. Often what you started out with, several years later may be very different. If your business has grown and is expanding into new services or products, you may have outgrown your logo too. If your target audience has changed, you most likely will need a new logo design to draw in the right crowd.

If any one of the seven points listed above applies to your logo, then it’s time to start thinking about getting a new one. A brand new logo, that is media friendly, interesting to look at and better than the competition’s can breathe new life into your brand and business and fuel an overall more successful marketing strategy. Like a new suit or fresh coat of paint, a new logo has the ability to completely transform the look of your company and establish a brand image that is more appealing and attractive to potential customers.

For more information about branding, marketing and logo design contact Nest Media Co.