Logo Design: Questions to ask a client?

macaddict23

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jun 20, 2006
382
0
MacVille, USA
I want to start on the right foot before I start designing this logo. Any ideas on what type of questions I should ask the client in order to compile as much information as possible? Thanks!
 

bluetooth

macrumors 6502a
May 1, 2007
658
1
Toronto
- Logo treatment - Iconic, Illustrative or Textual?

- Number of colours - One colour, Two colour, Three colour or Four colour process?

- Company/logo colors if applicable or available? Designer can always suggest color themes throughout the design process if the client is unsure.

- Ask the client to tell you a little about their company and the appropriate kind of logo: Brief description and overview of the company, service and/or product this logo will represent.

- Creative Strategy. Pointers on the logo design. Themes (BUZZWORDS) that the client wishes to portray in the logo.

- Ask the client to describe some ideas that they might have in mind for their logo design, or features that they DO NOT wish integrated into the logo.

- Ask if there are any web sites/companies that have logos SIMILAR to what they are looking for?

- Ask them to please provide any other specific information that will help you propose their preliminary logo designs.

- Ask what the Planned Usage of the new logo is, ie:
WEB (standard RGB and HTML)
WEB ANIMATION (Flash)
PRINT (Standard repro.)
STATIONERY (Letterheads, etc.)
BROCHURES (Standard repro.)
SIGNAGE (Digital output)
SIGNAGE (Plotter/Vinyl)
SILK-SCREEN (Wearables print)
EMBROIDERY (Wearables)
STATIONERY (Letterheads, etc.)
DIE CUT (Emboss)
DESKTOPS (Wallpaper)
SCREENSAVER (Flash)

-Future artwork they may be interested in (no obligation), ie:
WEB DESIGN
PRINT
STATIONARY
BROCHURES
POWERPOINT TEMPLATES
 

rajfantastic

macrumors member
Jun 9, 2007
79
0
so according to bluetooth, you should basically ask the client how to do your job. they are hiring you because they probably do not have a creative strategy or direction. also, a logo should always be able to work in a variety of sizes, media and printing methods.

i always ask my client for the ubiquitous list of adjectives that describe their company... between 10 and 20 usually suffices. i also ask them for things that inspire their work, their philosophy, et al. everything else (competitor's logos, creative direction, inspiration) requires a handful of hours of researching by the designer.
 

oldschool

macrumors 65816
Sep 30, 2003
1,029
0
so according to bluetooth, you should basically ask the client how to do your job. they are hiring you because they probably do not have a creative strategy or direction. also, a logo should always be able to work in a variety of sizes, media and printing methods.

i always ask my client for the ubiquitous list of adjectives that describe their company... between 10 and 20 usually suffices. i also ask them for things that inspire their work, their philosophy, et al. everything else (competitor's logos, creative direction, inspiration) requires a handful of hours of researching by the designer.


???

no you're not asking them how to do the job...you're asking them what they want. when people ask if you want "fries with that" they aren't asking because they don't know how to do their job..they are asking because they want to know if you want fries WITH THAT :p:D
 

Shotgun OS

macrumors 6502a
Dec 18, 2006
504
0
Ohio
when people ask if you want "fries with that" they aren't asking because they don't know how to do their job..they are asking because they want to know if you want fries WITH THAT :p:D
I think they are asking you that because they have to ask that. "Welcome to Burger King! Would you like to try our double-bacon quarter-pound sludge burger value meal for $7.99?" :D
 

bluetooth

macrumors 6502a
May 1, 2007
658
1
Toronto
so according to bluetooth, you should basically ask the client how to do your job. they are hiring you because they probably do not have a creative strategy or direction. also, a logo should always be able to work in a variety of sizes, media and printing methods.

i always ask my client for the ubiquitous list of adjectives that describe their company... between 10 and 20 usually suffices. i also ask them for things that inspire their work, their philosophy, et al. everything else (competitor's logos, creative direction, inspiration) requires a handful of hours of researching by the designer.
Having an organized, detailed work brief will only benefit both the designer and the client, as both will be clear on the wants and needs of the business.

The designer will never know more then the client about their business, therefore it is imperative that the client is able to express their wants and needs in great detail. The designer can of course, make suggestions, offer advice on layout, design, visual enhancements etc., but nobody knows the customer better then the client.

Asking the client to describe some ideas they may have for a logo or something they DO NOT want in their logo is hardly asking them how to do your job. A lot of clients do have something in mind as a base, more times then not, whether it be textual, iconic or illustration oriented. To add to that, I have had several clients tell me about something they have seen somewhere that caught their eye, which is why it is beneficial to ask. You are not asking them to go out and look for these ideas or examples, these are simply on the spot questions as to what's currently in their heads. Why play geussing games with lists of adjectives...Just ask the client directly what their business is all about and what feel/emotion they are looking for and go from there.

You will find that some are very direct and have the logo almost created in their mind, while others really don't know what they want, but together (with the aid of answering some of the questions above) ideas and direction begin to take place.

Rajfantastic, if you don't agree with the questions I posted, that's fine, but you don't have to voice yourself with a smug, condescending tone, whose only suggestion to the OP is to play a word game. If you are a professional then perhaps you should try and act like one.
 

rajfantastic

macrumors member
Jun 9, 2007
79
0
Rajfantastic, if you don't agree with the questions I posted, that's fine, but you don't have to voice yourself with a smug, condescending tone, whose only suggestion to the OP is to play a word game. If you are a professional then perhaps you should try and act like one.
i was simply trying to pass on some of my *professional* experience, since most clients have no idea what they want or need (only the good ones do).

when people ask if you want "fries with that" they aren't asking because they don't know how to do their job..they are asking because they want to know if you want fries WITH THAT
they are asking because you are paying them to make fries (logo?).
 

a cat *miaow*

macrumors regular
Jun 12, 2007
217
0
i was simply trying to pass on some of my *professional* experience, since most clients have no idea what they want or need (only the good ones do).
I would agree with that, as a designer I think it's my job to answer a lot of those questions myself.. i'm being employed so that they don't need to anwser all these questions themselves
Also, on many occasions i've had clients who will say "I like these logos" but it will be completely wrong direction for their own brand.

A short description of the business ideals should be enough to come up with some ideas - simple things that they will be able to anwser like:
what market are they appealing to
what are the selling points of their company (they offer the cheapest or most luxurious options for a certain product/they are the only place to get the service they offer)
I think you just need to understand the company to design a logo.

Things like -sizes/colours etc. are things that fall into the designers area of expertise so you should be recommending what you think is best.
 

Jim Campbell

macrumors 6502a
Dec 6, 2006
902
26
A World of my Own; UK
i was simply trying to pass on some of my *professional* experience, since most clients have no idea what they want or need (only the good ones do).
Yeah, but even that situation, it's important to establish exactly how little idea the client has ...

If you ask all of those questions and the client basically shrugs and says "whatever" then they can't really complain if you then bring them a logo that they loathe on sight. Obviously, you're going to have to do it again, but you're entirely justified in charging them for a second design, because they have failed to brief you in sufficient detail to allow you to do your job.

And that's my professional experience.

Cheers

Jim
 

Xquizit

macrumors member
Jun 13, 2007
54
0
I just had a horror story with a logo company.. I personally don't believe that we should tell you every little detail that we want unless we know 100% exactly what we want..

The reason I went to a designer is because I figured he/she would have some creativity.. If they're going to ask me for exactly what I want in every minute little detail, then I'll go to a friend that knows how to use Illustrator and Photoshop.. However if I'm coming to you to create a unique logo for me, then I'll describe my business and a couple things that I think might represent it.. Other than that, I would leave it to the designer to sell me a logo that I like..
 

CanadaRAM

macrumors G5
Bottom line.

A logo has to communicate the message that the business owner wants to communicate to the audience.

The talent to turn an abstract message into an understandable, reproduceable and recognizable graphic is what the designer is paid to do.
 

ezekielrage_99

macrumors 68040
Oct 12, 2005
3,336
16
Bottom line.

A logo has to communicate the message that the business owner wants to communicate to the audience.

The talent to turn an abstract message into an understandable, reproduceable and recognizable graphic is what the designer is paid to do.
That is good advise, but make sure the colour/font/style is what the client wants I seen plenty of good designers create great icons but the clients hate it with a passion.

Remember as long as the client is happy with it everything else should follow.
 

Sean Dempsey

macrumors 68000
Aug 7, 2006
1,617
3
logo design - charge by the hour. you aren't a mind reader, don't let a flat fee turn into an endless series of revisions and changes.
 

Jim Campbell

macrumors 6502a
Dec 6, 2006
902
26
A World of my Own; UK
That is good advise, but make sure the colour/font/style is what the client wants I seen plenty of good designers create great icons but the clients hate it with a passion.
"Oh, no," the client said to me, shaking her head. "This isn't what we wanted it to look like at all."

With that, she handed me the piece of paper that I had been briefly shown at the initial meeting.

"This is what we wanted it to look like. Our Managing Director spent all morning on that."

Comic Sans. All caps. Two spaces between each letter. Rainbow gradient fill.

True story.

Cheers!

Jim
 

ezekielrage_99

macrumors 68040
Oct 12, 2005
3,336
16
"Oh, no," the client said to me, shaking her head. "This isn't what we wanted it to look like at all."

With that, she handed me the piece of paper that I had been briefly shown at the initial meeting.

"This is what we wanted it to look like. Our Managing Director spent all morning on that."

Comic Sans. All caps. Two spaces between each letter. Rainbow gradient fill.

True story.

Cheers!

Jim

Been there done that as well.....


And this is the site they end up with (fortunately I didn't create or design this site).