One of the first things most businesses do before opening their doors is to create a logo. A logo is an easy way for prospective clients to recognize your business, but as you know, starting a new clinic or practice comes with a lot of expenses. So, for many, a full visual branding guide with a custom logo is out of their financial reach. While they understand the value of consistent branding to create a recognizable brand, they often cannot justify it in the beginning stages of their new venture.
We get it! And for this reason, we will break down how to create a logo and branding guidelines for your new clinic. Here are the steps we go through to create a logo:
Step 1: Define your Brand Identity
Before creating a logo, it is important to have some guidelines for your business. You want to create a logo that appeals to your ideal audience. To do that, you need to understand just who your ideal client is and how your practice comes in to help them.
First, right down as much as you know about your audience. What do they have in common? Is it their age? Their gender? Their lifestyle? The more similarities you can find about them, the more you can cater to them.
Second, what values and mission does your company bring to these individuals? What can they expect from you? This may seem strange when all you want is a logo, but understanding these ideas will help you to determine color choices, fonts, and the overall feel of your logo. This will allow you to create a logo that accurately reflects your brand.
Step 2: Choose a Design Style
For steps 2-4, jump on Pinterest or a similar platform for design inspiration. Look for inspiration and decide on the type of logo you want to create. You may want a simple, text-based logo or a more complex, graphic logo. I always start with a bit of research to understand what I like, what I don’t like, and what others in my industry have done. Just something to keep in mind. It might be tempting to do what others have already done, but creating a similar logo will not help you stand out or differentiate your clinic. So think about how you can make it different based on what makes your practice different.
Step 3: Choose Colors
Colors play an important role in branding and can influence how people perceive your brand. Choose colors that match your brand personality and that resonate with your target audience. If you are a pediatric SLP clinic, it might make the most sense to pick vibrant colors, but for a counseling office, subdued, neutral colors might be a better fit. Really think about ideal clients and what would put them at ease. We like to use Pinterest and Coolors for inspiring us and helping us pick amazing color combinations. For more information on color, check out our article: The Psychology of Color and How It Influences Decision Making.
Step 4: Sketch Ideas
This is my favorite part! This is where you really get to let loose and get creative. When I was in school for design, the art teacher would have us sketch 40 ideas for each project. Now I’m not saying you have to create 40, but give it an honest go and draw at least ten different ideas and variations on ideas. And don’t worry about whether you can draw or not. This is about getting what is in your head out onto paper. Draw all the ideas, even the weird ones, because you may find that once on paper, they are not as crazy or weird as you think.
Step 5: Refine Your Design
Once you have some basic ideas, pick a couple of your favorites. Based on your comfort with drawing or a digital tool like Canva, start to refine your ideas. Draw or create them with more detail experimenting with different fonts, colors, and layouts. It’s important to keep your design simple and easy to recognize while remembering that small font will be difficult to see on social media icons and websites. You may decide that you would like to create a circular logo for social media and an image with your business name for your website. It is okay to have two logo variations that you use as long as you stick with the same color scheme, images, and font, which will keep them uniform.
Step 6: Get Feedback
Don’t miss this step, as it is a major indicator of your logo resonating with your audience. You may be tempted to only share your logo with your spouse, friends, and mom, but it is important to share it with your ideal audience. You can make this fun. Share it on social media, and let me vote on it. Not only will it build engagement, but it will get them excited about your clinic. Make revisions as necessary based on the feedback you receive.
Step 7: Finalize Your Design
Final step! Well, actually, the final step is patting yourself on your back, but before you do that, save your logo in various file formats, including PNG without a background, JPEG, and EPS. You can also save it in different sizes. For the latest sizing recommendations, check out this article.
Don’t Have the Time, Desire, or Ability. Here Are Some Alternatives:
If you don’t have time to create a logo, you can hire out a graphic designer. Prices will range greatly based on experience, process, and demand. But here are a few less expensive options.
Hire Someone on a Work Platform
You can find a wide variety of graphic designers on platforms like 99 Designs, Upwork, and Fiverr, but before you hire them, really spend some time looking over their portfolio to decide if you like their style. In addition, read reviews from past clients. This will allow you to better understand their skill and, more importantly, their ability to communicate and act professionally. There is nothing worse than hiring someone who ghosts you or drags out a project.
Ask for Referrals
This one is pretty straightforward. Spend some time looking at the logos and branding of others within your niche. If you find logos that you like, ask them if they enjoyed working with their graphic designer and for their contact info. Chances are, if they had a good experience and love their logo, then you will too.
Don’t have the time or desire to create your visual branding and logo, we can help! Schedule a time to talk to us about your logo.
Remember that creating a logo is a creative process, so don’t be afraid to experiment and try new things. Good luck!