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DL-44
Maniac (V) Inmate

From: under the bed
Insane since: Feb 2000

IP logged posted posted 03-15-2005 14:18 Edit Quote

hi guys

I'm wondering what those of you who do this often would consider a reasonable amount of time - both a real-world time frame, and a number of billable hours - for the creation of a logo from scratch.

What's present: the business name, and some vague ideas of the direction the owner would like to go visually.

The intent is for the logo to be completely scalable - business cards to the side of a van.

Starting from conceptualization, a few samples for the client to view, and then final execution and delivery in digital format.

Just looking for a general idea, I realize there are plenty of variables.

Input much appreciated.

reisio
Bipolar (III) Inmate

From: Florida
Insane since: Mar 2005

IP logged posted posted 03-15-2005 18:11 Edit Quote

A day. (or two, if you wake up the next morning and think "Wow, nevermind what I did yesterday, _this_ is gonna be raw!")

hyperbole
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: Madison, Indiana, USA
Insane since: Aug 2000

IP logged posted posted 03-15-2005 18:51 Edit Quote

This is actually more than just creating a logo. The owner has said "I have an idea of what I want. As, an expert, I what you to tell me how to make my business more visible so I can make more money."

This is actually a branding project. You have been asked to come up with an image that will represent the company (as in the company image sense, not an image from PhotoShop) .

Because of the extent of research and development you will need to do, a large company might pay anywhere from $15,000 to $100,000 for such a project. I suspect your client doesn't have that kind of money and isn't expecting you to do $15,000 worth of market research to complete his task.

For a simple logo that can be used on a letterhead, business card or brochure, $1,500 to $5,000 is not unresonable. You will spend from one to two weeks talking to the customer, doing sketches, getting feed-back, and doing the design.

To create a logo that will also go on the side of a truck or a billboard, I would charge extra. It will take anywhere from two to four weeks extra.



.

-- not necessarily stoned... just beautiful.

JKMabry
Maniac (V) Inmate

From: raht cheah
Insane since: Aug 2000

IP logged posted posted 03-15-2005 22:14 Edit Quote

hyperbole is spot on (with the second to last paragraph, I've yet to land any clients from the first section of his reply so can't comment), tho he fails to mention that most people you run into will crap their heart out when you tell them the cost "FOR A LOGO?!?!"

In your position I'd try to come at them high so they understand you're serious and there's a definite value to the work you're doing. If they're the type to crap their hearts out, look at you sideways, or feign unimpressed and look elsewhere, hopefully you'll get some indication then you can try to work something out that suits you both. Sometimes when we have a client we want to work with because of their market or reputation in the community but they have budget issues for the project we're quoting, we'll work a deal with them for case study and referrals in exchange for a reduced fee, say knock 500 off for a case study and $100 per referal (they'd set up the meeting with an interested party). Usually set a time limit on the referrals: "X number within X months or you will be billed at the prorated amount at the end of the X month period". The case study would be something you'd sit down with them on to get their feedback on the project after you're done. Mostly for use in marketing materials but also try and press for unbridled ciriticism to help you get better at what you're doing.

Most small businesses (the kind needing identity, startups) will just want something, you usually have to try and drill it in that this is going to be the face on their business for some time to come, they need to make sure their face doesn't repulse people. Changing their logo down the road can confuse people, dilute their brand, make people think they're gone, make people think there's a new company in town that they need to get to know... depending on their market and the exposure they're going to get in that market. Best to do it right the first time.

WebShaman
Maniac (V) Mad Scientist

From: Happy Hunting Grounds...
Insane since: Mar 2001

IP logged posted posted 03-16-2005 06:52 Edit Quote

Yup, Hyberbole and JKMabry have it down. I used to carry a portfolio with various Logos in it, that I had created, from high cost down to low cost, as examples.

"This one cost around $10,000 and took two weeks to create, and this one cost $7,000 and took around 1 and a half weeks. This one is a bit plainer, and cost $5,000 and only took a week. Of course, some don't want to pay that much, so I did these here, as well, for a few clients <show less expensive and plainer logos>"

Normally, the really good ones (and expensive) look very impressive next to the more shoddy and less expensive ones. It is also something that one can immediately see and judge.

I normally limited my logo work to one week (a logo that was to be used on everything, in every format, that is).

DL-44
Maniac (V) Inmate

From: under the bed
Insane since: Feb 2000

IP logged posted posted 03-16-2005 18:31 Edit Quote

Thanks for the input guys.

I was afraid I was thinking too high, but my figures are much lower than your suggestions.

I will need to raise my prices for the next round =)

In the meantime, I have a client who is pleased and more than happy to spread the word, so who could ask for more?

Nimraw
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: Sthlm, Sweden
Insane since: Sep 2000

IP logged posted posted 03-18-2005 11:06 Edit Quote

I guess another thing worth mentioning (although you probably all know this) is to stress the fact that the amount of time you are charging isn't just the time it takes to draw the final logo.

For the few commissions I've done I've gotten strange looks a few times and the comment "How can it take so long to draw that?".

I guess many people do not understand the underlying process of actually reaching the final stage of a design.. be it logos, websites, architecture och general design. After all in the eye of some people we still compete with the neighbours kid that has downloaded PS or some other application. Sad but true.

reisio
Bipolar (III) Inmate

From: Florida
Insane since: Mar 2005

IP logged posted posted 03-18-2005 13:01 Edit Quote

Talent is talent. What looks good, looks good.

JKMabry
Maniac (V) Inmate

From: raht cheah
Insane since: Aug 2000

IP logged posted posted 03-18-2005 20:28 Edit Quote
quote:
Talent is talent. What looks good, looks good.



I assume that's in reference to the "neighbours kid" comment? It's completely true, there's a lot of neighbors kids on this forum and others like it that totally rock with making stuff look good. The problem that clients in the market for design work face in regards to that is that a lot of times they will blindly trust the neghbors kid, this blindness is usually an onset disease caused by the neighbor kid's price vs the "designer's". I've seen and worked with a lot of people that have fallen victim to this blindness from once to many times and are now ready for a professional solution after applying a lot of expensive band-aids.

This industry is saturated with neighbor kids and the majority of them are "miss" in the "hit-and-miss" client's hunt for talent. Not necessarily because of their ability to "mak something look good". There's a ton more goin into a design project than making something that looks good. Either the client or the designer needs to be a very focused, experienced marketer and strong communicator, or most likely less than stellar results will be the result.

That said, there's a lot of crappy professional designers as well

The thing for anyone in the market for design services needs to do is look at a portfolio, meet with the desinger and discuss the project in detail and call on references to get an idea of the workflow and professionalism of the designer before they become blinded by price issues.

"You get what you pay for" is true but not everything, you also get (and pay for) what you *ask* for, or *discuss*. Communication on the front end of the project makes sure that you end up with a product that communicates to the marketplace.

WebShaman
Maniac (V) Mad Scientist

From: Happy Hunting Grounds...
Insane since: Mar 2001

IP logged posted posted 03-19-2005 13:39 Edit Quote

Let us be plain here :

Take a look at the best, most effective brands (logos) out there.

Who made them? The neighborhood kid?

Nope.

Let me demonstrate another example -

The case of the Deutsche Bank - their logo was a square, red box, with the two letters DB in it, also in red, on a white background. The designer in question recieved 50,000 deutsch Marks (before the Euro) to round the corners of the square, and make the letters a bit more round.

In hindsight, everyone says "50,000 for that??!! You have got to be kidding!!!!"

But one has to see it, before the design took place. In this case, the designer in question spend a lot of time, energy, and investment in coming up with a logo that was connected to the logo before (which is what the client wanted) but also showing a fresh, new "modern" company.

The designer succeeded.

Would the neighborhood kid have achieved this? Highly doubtful.

It is not just a qustion of designing something that "looks good", as JK pointed out.

SnowWeb
Obsessive-Compulsive (I) Inmate

From: New York, New York US
Insane since: Nov 2000

IP logged posted posted 03-22-2005 21:20 Edit Quote

I am attempting to fix a figure for a logo for a client for whom I just created a website. They now want a logo. I made sort of a logo on the website, so I don't have to start from scratch. I don't have to do research. Just make the thing.

I charged $1,000 for a six page website with domain. Is it too much to charge $250 for the logo?
What do you guys think?

The website is at
http://www.fordhammanor.org

Snowweb

SnowWeb

JKMabry
Maniac (V) Inmate

From: raht cheah
Insane since: Aug 2000

IP logged posted posted 03-22-2005 21:46 Edit Quote
quote:
Take a look at the best, most effective brands (logos) out there.



'effectiveness' is kinda subjective when talking about a logo. What are some of the logos you'd be talking about when talking "effective"? I ask because I'd assume if you want to take subjectivity out of the picture and focus on "recognition" as a measure of "effectivess" that's utterly measureable, I'd think what you'd be talking about is more a function of marketing and exposure than logo design.

To me, with a somewhat innate sense that rounding some corners and typography on a square would be a natural transitional fashionable rebrand, 50k would indeed seem a bit much. I'd rather be labeled the kid next door than to charge that kind of money for something that would take that amount of work. Then again, if 50k is what it would take to get them to think seriously about my services then heck yeah, cut the check!

quote:
Is it too much to charge $250 for the logo



Depends on what you plan on doing and what the end result would be. If you're talking about the scripty typography as a logo, and assuming that it's a typeface and not custom vector work, you could type it in Illustrator, convert it to outlines and you're done in 5 minutes. Whether you'd choose to charge 250 for 5 minutes is entirely up to you! Charge your rate for your time.

reisio
Bipolar (III) Inmate

From: Florida
Insane since: Mar 2005

IP logged posted posted 03-22-2005 22:29 Edit Quote

Companies do well because they do well - not because they have really cute logos. IBM's logo is nothing special, neither is Sony's, neither is HP's.

Take a look at this list... http://www.usatoday.com/money/companies/2004-03-22-fortune-500-list_x.htm ...and think about the logos for each company. Most are not especially noteworthy - a lot of those companies barely even have a "logo".

The company makes the logo, not the other way around. I'm happy you guys are getting paid ridiculous amounts of money for a little drawing, but let's not get silly.

DL-44
Maniac (V) Inmate

From: under the bed
Insane since: Feb 2000

IP logged posted posted 03-22-2005 23:15 Edit Quote
quote:
Most are not especially noteworthy - a lot of those companies barely even have a "logo".



I would disagree, and I think this illustrates the point fairly well.

What you call "barely even a logo" I seemingly tend to call "good design".
(edit: there are certainly some of those companies who don't fall under the category I'm talking about as well...)

A good log does not have to be "particularly noteworthy". It needs to be clean, easy, unobtrusive, and recognizable.

As JK said, marketing takes care of the other side of "effectiveness" as far as getting the logo out there to be recognized.

Obviously it takes far more than a good logo to get a company going. But it is sheer folly to underestimate the importance of quality design.

How you present yourself visually says things people...consciously or not.

quote:
The company makes the logo, not the other way around.



I won't entirely disagree, but I still give a good logo more credit in it's role for a company than that...




For the record, in my case here it took me about 5 days encompassing around 20 billable hours. The client recieved their first actual logo (created from scratch and developed by myself based on the client's form of business, existing name, and vague ideas of what type of imagery/style was wanted) in the form of a two sided business card. The business card was the top prioroty in this case - client had no more cards, and did not want to reprint the old ugly "home made" ones.

Further devlopment for additional uses still pending. Logo is fully scalable (requiring some minor editing on rescaling), but the copy they've received is embedded in the nonscalable business card image.

(Edited by DL-44 on 03-22-2005 23:25)

WarMage
Maniac (V) Mad Scientist

From: Rochester, New York, USA
Insane since: May 2000

IP logged posted posted 03-23-2005 01:32 Edit Quote

Are you able to share it with us?

Dan @ Code Town

jstuartj
Bipolar (III) Inmate

From: Mpls, MN
Insane since: Dec 2000

IP logged posted posted 04-07-2005 20:42 Edit Quote

An effective logo is so much more then just a pretty design that looks cool.

A logo not only serves as a visual idenitfer of a product or service, it should help promote and sell the company and/or its service. It should positively impact the brand, the perceiption of the company in the eye of the customer.

It's important to remeber that brand driven by the perception of the product or service in the mind of the customer. You can work to change or modify that percetion, by using advertising, Marketing, Public Relations, and Design or change of operations. A proper logo will working as an intrgral part of all many of those processes.

Sure you can just design a graphic logo, and sure the customer might be happy with. but then it is just an illustration, no a logo. And sure you will get paid. But will it be effectivem and serve the client and their brand. Maybe if you are lucky. However there are lots of implications that should be broght to the attention of the customer. Services which you could provide and which could make make the diffrence in the logo costing money, or it helping promote brands identiy, and the companys effectiveness, visablilty and in turn help make money.

Lots of research go goes into a proper logo, here are some questions you should be asking your client and self:

  • Will it create a negative or indesired effect in the way your customer see the company.

  • Will the logo or mark alienate, offend, or have a negative effent in the local commuity, collect demographic data for your customers user base, how will they perceive the logo? How will it be viewed my minoritys, childern, etc...

  • Will the logo sell or promote your product to a unintented target. Such as Cartoons, for service or products intended for adults.

  • Will the mark bring your product to mind, at first glance, or will it distract or bring to mind unrealted or undesired responses?

  • Will it, be visable at night, does it proved relevent meaning if inverted, rotate, in motion or at a distance.

  • Will it reproduce in all expected media? Will it beable to use it on everything from tv to websites, or from letter heads and print media. How about use on billboards, textiles, and sides of vehicals? Logo's tend to be used the the stranges place.

  • Well it work, in B&W, Color, Spot Color, can it be faxed, Email, and projected.

  • Market testing, how do others see the logo, what come to mind first. Is it something the customer wishes to be assoicated with/ Does it relate to the customer product or service?

  • Then there is the whole legal side, does it infringe on anyones trademark or copyright.



The list goes on,

If you are not providing branding service you are basicly jsut an illustrator. I would simply charge what ever local illustrartors get for illustration in the area. Most client will want to, purchesed with all the rights to useage, So keep the in mind when you price your services. You might charge $200-1000 for an illustration that could be used once, say for there letter head, or website, but what if the company decides to include it on all produces sold, or decide to offer t-shirts, or mugs with the logo, how much is the logo worth to them now, and you may loose out on.

All things to consider.

J. Stuart J.



(Edited by jstuartj on 04-07-2005 20:59)

Nimraw
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: Sthlm, Sweden
Insane since: Sep 2000

IP logged posted posted 04-09-2005 11:07 Edit Quote

^^ I could not have stated it better myself

Another issue is that little thing called context (mentioned above, but just to reiterate).

There are logos out there that are great in their present context, but use that logo for another company and it might turn out real nasty.

The design of a logo should (apart from being visually appealing) connect to the overall profile of the company. Imagine using the graphic profile of Toys'R'Us for a distinguished broker firm, or that of McD for a funeral parlor. Instant context clash!

In short; context is one of the things that contradicts the "if it looks good, it looks good"-mentality!

If content is king, I'd say that context is queen!

Will100
Neurotic (0) Inmate
Newly admitted

From:
Insane since: Mar 2009

IP logged posted posted 03-19-2009 15:11 Edit Quote

Hi Guys,

Thanks for such a great discussion. I am doing vectorization of logos through Corel Draw and some time I use Illustrator.

Thanks

Will

twItch^
Maniac (V) Mad Scientist

From: Denver, CO, USA
Insane since: Aug 2000

IP logged posted posted 03-19-2009 16:19 Edit Quote

I'm pretty sure you're all wrong.

Logos should be drawn with a pencil on lined notebook paper. The first concept is sufficient. Scan it at some resolution, scale it to whatever looks best on your monitor, then print it out and mail it to the client.

Include a bill for $30,000.

Reap rewards.

-S

hyperbole
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: Madison, Indiana
Insane since: Aug 2000

IP logged posted posted 03-19-2009 18:47 Edit Quote

<sniff><sniff>
<sniff><sniff>

Yes, ... I'm quite certain someone has been using sarcasm around here.

.



-- not necessarily stoned... just beautiful.

White Hawk
Maniac (V) Inmate

From: zero divided.
Insane since: May 2004

IP logged posted posted 03-20-2009 12:58 Edit Quote

Or do what the designers of the new Pepsi logo concepts did: distort an existing logo, then copy and paste several pages of utter tripe with nothing but tenuous references to the logo, and charge them enough to keep you in rent till you retire.

flashfango
Nervous Wreck (II) Inmate

From:
Insane since: Oct 2010

IP logged posted posted 10-29-2010 09:40 Edit Quote

I think spamming a thread like this is a no-no

Edited by WebShaman

(Edited by WebShaman on 10-29-2010 14:34)



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