Let’s say you’re opening up your own small business. You’ve found a niche that you feel will set you apart from other companies, you’ve found your target market, and you’ve done your due diligence to get everything set in place for opening. All that you need to come up with is a name and a logo. For people who might not be as creative as others, that might prove challenging. That might even seem impossible. You think to yourself, “What would really catch someone’s attention?”
The answer is more within reach than you think.
If you do some research on Google Images, you’ll see tons of logos and brand names that have been around forever. Companies that range from Coca Cola to Google, Adidas to State Farm, and everything in between. These companies have had their names and logos in the lights and on the screen for many years, yet they started out just like you, many years ago. What is it that makes their brand so famous, and what can you do to emulate that?
You’ll first need a name. There’s no need to be cute about it, nor is there a need to overthink things. Your name should reflect what your business does, and who you are as a company. Let’s use IBM as an example. They started in 1911 as CTR, standing for Computing, Tabulating and Recording, but later renamed to International Business Machines Corporation, or IBM for short. Their name is simple, and explains what service they provide. They are one of the world’s largest and most prominent IT consulting and services companies. You can figure that out just by knowing the name of their company. When you create your name, keep it simple, clean and to the point.
Next, and this is perhaps the more difficult part, you’ll need a logo. Your logo, too, should be simple and clean, but it should have a couple of clever elements within, just to catch people’s eyes. Some examples we can think of are FedEx, Amazon, and Baskin-Robbins. Those logos have a lot in common. Each of them is based on words or letters from the company’s name, and have a hidden element that will make you notice it right away. The FedEx arrow, the A to Z arrow under Amazon, the BR stylized like a 31, each of these discrete elements are great examples of getting the company’s message across of what they provide, while being cleverly hidden within the wording and lettering of the logo. That’s something to use as a benchmark for your logo.
I know it’s not easy to really nail what your business’s brand should look like. I’ve been there, so I know firsthand where you might be. In reality, just look around you. You’ll see inspirations all around you. Just follow the guidelines the big companies use, and you’ll do just fine.
Jeremy Tuch is a self-started freelance graphic designer, from Teaneck, NJ. He is diversely talented, very approachable and creatively smart. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Jeremy Tuch