"We LOVE the logo, and we are getting positive feedback on it.”
What a great thing to read in an email from a client. Makes the ego swell just that little bit, but hey, its deserved. I worked hard, put out a really nice logo, so why not soak up the praise?
Job closed.. a few weeks later the following email pops into the inbox…
“Oh, have you seen? Another company, in another country with a similar name has a logo with a design concept like ours! Damn!”
I jump over to Google and click on the first result. The page loads, my jaw drops onto the keyboard with a thud. I’m looking at a logo that not only has similar design elements to my ‘original’ logo, but the colour is also the same.
"Damn indeed” I think, along with a few more colourful words.
Where did I go wrong? Research, research, research and more research. I missed something so simple and feel a little like I’ve been caught with my pants down. A quick internet search of my client’s name, would have saved me from looking a little less than professional.
It would have been easy to point a finger at my client and say, "didn’t you know about these other guys?" They are number one in an internet search. Surely you checked on other organisations using this name?
But at the end of the day it’s down to the designer to do his or her due diligence. It’s such an obvious step. Check your client’s competitors. Check the key words of their company name and see if there are any possible clashes. Check out organisations around the world using the the same/similar company name as your client. These other organisations may be competing with your client for the top spot in an internet search. Make sure that the branding created for your client will differentiate them from the rest of the noise.
It has been a sobering exercise looking back at other clients’ logos and seeing the similar ones out there.
What have we as clients and designers learnt from this? The importance of good research from both sides before putting pen to paper.
This project has been one of a few ‘budget’ logo jobs. It shows that reducing research time to minimise costs can be a dangerous thing. The designer will feel responsible for what’s happened, probably taking a loss to fix the issue and keep good relations with the client. The client will end up paying for the extra work outside the scope of the design brief. Although it’s not totally possible to foresee and dodge all the problems out there, a generous amount of time charged to research could go a long way.