Using Your New Logo
Practical suggestions for putting new logos to work
So you’ve taken delivery of your new logo. It’s everything you hoped for and a great representation of your company, product or service. Now what? How do you use your new company visual identity and get it ‘out there?’ Good question. It’s only by repeated use will your logo gain any ‘traction’ and be connected to your company by established clients and those that might be. Here’s some suggestions, as well as some examples, of how you can use your new logo. Some are free and can be accomplished by yourself quickly and easily. Others might require the services of an outside vendor. All of our suggestions will help get your new logo noticed.
“Your logo should be featured on every scrap of paper that leaves your desk. And even those that don’t. Brand recognition means recognizing a brand. Get yours recognized. By everyone.”
Stick it in your e-mail.
If you communicate a lot with your clients electronically, you probably send a lot of e-mails every day. The ‘signature’ section at the bottom of those e-mails is a perfect place to start sending your new logo all over the place. We’re not suggesting that you create a full-blown e-mail template (though you can if you like) as these can be unwieldy and often times the people receiving your e-mail will have their ‘view images’ option turned off. A simple .JPG file, .GIF or .PNG of your logo is unobtrusive, won’t bother anyone while still building its recognition.
Slap it on your website or blog.
If you have a website or blog, slap your logo on the header as soon as you get your hands on digital files. Should probably stick it in the footer as well. For that, you’ll need a .PNG, .JPG or .GIF file too. You’ll probably want to make your logo nice and big, but there are some sizing issues you’ll need to think about, particularly when it comes to the aspect ratio of your spiffy new mark. Read using a logo on websites & blogs for more on that. If you don’t have a blog or a website, probably time to get one. Read this article on marketing with websites & blogs for some practical advice. It’s focused on designers, but most of the concepts still apply, regardless of what industry you’re in.
Announce it to the world.
If you do run a website or blog, there’s no better place to announce your new logo to the world. If you don’t talk about it, nobody else will – unless you’re running a huge corporation, your blog is the only place that your new logo will seem newsworthy. Publish a blog post. Tell a little about the evolution of the design. What it means. Why it’s the most important logo in the history of ever. Once you’ve done that, go to your Twitter account and tell everyone about the blog post. You don’t have a Twitter account? Probably time to get one of those too. Ditto for Facebook. Speaking of which, if you do have Facebook and Twitter pages, time to add your new corporate identity to your profile. Read using a logo on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube for more on that.
Plaster it on every scrap of paper at your office.
If your business is in any way typical, you’ll use a lot of paper to shoot information around. Internal memos. Photocopies. FAX cover sheets. All of these have spaces crying out to plaster your logo over. Nothing terribly dramatic. A small version of your logo printed at the top, or bottom, of your photocopy paper. A nice black and white bitmap of your logo (a linear setup) on a FAX cover sheet. You give out invoices? There too. Shipping memos? Uh-huh. Your logo should be featured on every scrap of paper that leaves your desk. And even those that don’t. Brand recognition means recognizing a brand. Get yours recognized. By everyone.
Get yourself some business cards. Letterhead and envelopes too.
Remember when we said that a new logo should be plastered on everything? You’d be amazed how many people undergo the expense of designing logos, only to forgo getting business cards and other stationery items that feature it. The rationale usually involves having cards left over from earlier days, when the company didn’t have a logo, or a design that wasn’t particularly inspiring. If you’re in that boat, toss the old ones out. They’ve served their purpose, and it’s time to get new ones. The cost of printing letterheads and business cards is nominal, relatively speaking, and well worth the expense. If stationery design wasn’t included with your new logo workup, then it’s time to get it done. Business cards and letterheads are how most people will come to know your new logo. Envelopes aren’t too shabby either.
The term collateral design refers to everything else. Trinkets (often referred to as premium incentives) that feature your new logo. Think T-shirts, baseball caps, pens, coffee mugs. Used to be that these cool little marketing items were off limits to the small and micro-business due to minimum orders (you’d have to order 100 coffee mugs to give three out to your pals, your wife/husband or your kids) and cost prohibitive setup charges. No longer. With services like Zazzle and Cafe Press, you can set up whatever ‘products’ you want, without any minimum restrictions and few, if any, setup costs. You can order one of each (for your own personal use) or you can order several for gifts and promotional giveaways. Another nice feature is that these platforms allow you to set up your own store so when your new brand is all the rage, you can sell stuff. There are some design restrictions, and really custom collateral material will still need the services of an old-school vendor, but online product sites will certainly suffice at the beginning, when your funds may be light.
Redo old brochures and advertising material.
If your business is new, and your logo design is but part of an overall launch, you can safely ignore this one. You’ll need to start building an inventory of brochures, postcards, presentation folders and other marketing material with your new logo. Everything doesn’t have to be produced at once (though it’s not a bad idea, for consistency’s sake, to have it designed by the same designer or design firm) and you can produce material as needs arise, and budgets allow. But what if your logo is a re-brand, a new version of your earlier corporate identity that had grown long in the tooth? Eventually, you’ll have to replace all those brochures, flyers and pamphlets that aren’t current with your new ‘look and feel’ too. How quickly, and how radically, you replace this material depends solely on your budget. And how different your new design is from its earlier incarnation. If you’ve only changed the visual aspect of your company logo, and the name remained the same. No issue. Replace your advertising material as stocks dwindle, or new needs arise. If you’ve changed your company name, it’s time to change everything. Right now. This massive, traumatic overhaul is one of the reasons we suggest you take a lot of care when naming your new company.
It’s not a good idea to change that without a great deal of forethought.