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5 signs your logo is hurting your business

by Bridget Aymar
Bridget Aymar
September 15, 2017

Woman with heads on head as if havign a headache

A logo is the visual representation of your business. It should provide a snapshot of your mission and values, and capture the attention of your customers. But for many small businesses, their logo makes the wrong impression.

“Your logo represents who you are: It’s your face,” says Anne Gelbman, founder of Cuisine Culture and Conversations. When she first launched her travel agency, she hired a designer who delivered disappointing work that reflected poorly on her brand. She recently partnered with the designers at Deluxe to refresh her business logo, and received a design that her clients love. “I’ve learned designs that appeal to me, might not be appealing to my clients,” she says.

Ask yourself these questions to determine whether your logo is harming your business’s reputation.

1. Does it translate to black and white?

Logos that contain multiple colors or rich details like illustrations, mascots and drop shadows look fantastic on your computer screen or when printed in full color. But do those details get lost in black and white?

To test your logo, print it in full color, and make a black and white photocopy. Does it look blurry and distorted? Are the words legible? If so, the design will also look sloppy on invoices, on social media or small screens like smartphones and tablets, or on other printed media where the size is reduced. These logos are also challenging to embroider, which hinders your ability to create branded apparel or uniforms in the future.

2. Does it contain clip art?

When small business owners lack the time and expertise to craft a custom logo, grabbing free clip art seems like a solid solution. However, because this method is popular, small businesses within the same industry often gravitate toward the same designs. In the future, it’s likely a similar business will use the same clip art in their logo, and you’ll have no legal recourse to stop them.

Your logo is the identity of your company distilled into an elegant mark that tells a story in one glance. A clip art image will neither differentiate you from competitors nor will it be memorable for your customers.

3. Do the colors fit your brand?

Color is one of the most important elements of your logo. Different colors have unspoken meanings, and tend to convey different traits. For example, yellow says warm, happy and relaxed, while red shouts passion, energy and excitement. Ask yourself what you hope customers will feel about your brand, and determine whether the colors in your logo inspire those emotions.

4. Are there too many words?

Your slogan, location or founding year may be important to your business, but they don’t belong in your logo. Too much text interferes with the visual impression your logo should make.

5. Did you forget to develop a style guide?

A brand style guide is a document that describes how your logo and brand should be used across different types of media, from newspapers and billboards to website banner ads and social media. As your business grows and you promote it more heavily, the style guide ensures your logo looks great no matter where it appears. It includes guidelines on color, size, taglines, legal uses and more.

Does your logo need a refresh or redesign? Deluxe will connect you with a design expert to develop a logo and style guide with impact.

Get ready to love your new logo

Build your brand, starting with professional logo design.

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Speeding into a new era with a revamped logo

by John Habib
John Habib
September 13, 2017

After Rick and Kim Archuletta took over R & R Auto Repair, a 40-year-old fixture in Sacramento, Calif., they grew its business by 30 percent in just a few years. However, they still faced the challenge encountered by many well-established small businesses: how to keep an old-school company relevant in the 21st century.

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Deluxe’s guide to online marketing for the real estate industry [PLAYBOOK]

by Amber Humphrey
Amber Humphrey

Traditional forms of real estate marketing don’t have the same impact they once did. With a staggering 92 percent of home buyers searching online before they buy, it’s clear the future of the industry is digital.

But reaching those prospects online isn’t as simple as promoting your business on real estate listing sites like Zillow and Trulia. To attract new clients and gain an edge in the digital landscape, you have to develop a strategy that encompasses multiple online marketing channels and techniques.

Leverage today’s digital marketing tools to reach people in the market looking to buy, sell or lease. This succinct Real Estate Industry Playbook provides a three-step approach to building your real estate business online, focusing on your online identity, your online presence and your online personality.

Establish an online identity

Did you know 70 percent of buyers and 75 percent of sellers found their real estate agent on the internet?

Now that most buyers and sellers begin their home or property searches on the web, it’s more important than ever to grow your online presence. When they search, prospects want to know about your company’s specialties, certifications, personality and what they can expect if they decide to work with you. As the foundation of your online identity, your logo and website can help answer these questions and provide your business with the kind of digital curb appeal that will entice new clients.

The guide explains:

  • How to build brand equity with a professionally designed logo
  • The five requirements for a powerful real estate logo
  • How to maximize your online identity with a professional website

Attract clients through search engines and online listings

Did you know nearly 65 percent of internet users click on the first three results in a search engine listing?

With so many other realtors, property managers, appraisers and brokers all vying for the same clients, it’s crucial your company doesn’t get lost in the shuffle. Search engine optimization (SEO), pay-per-click (PPC) advertising and online directory listings make it possible for people to find you on the web. SEO and PPC help you stay competitive by improving your search rankings while directories like Yelp, Foursquare and Yahoo Local further increase your online presence, maximizing your business’s visibility.

Our real estate guide explains:

  • How to improve your SEO rankings
  • The benefits of PPC advertising
  • How to increase your online visibility with directory listings

Leverage your client base to win referrals using social media and email marketing

Did you know 74 percent of home sellers use social media to find a real estate agent?

As you know, in the real estate industry, your work with a client doesn’t end when the sale has been made. Because nearly half of all sellers choose their representative agent based on a referral from a friend or relative, it’s critical that you’re remembered months or even years in the future. Social media and email marketing are both great ways to stay engaged with past clients and build top-of-mind awareness. If your messages are consistent and relevant, and provide readers with valuable content, you can use those channels to turn your client base into ambassadors who spread the word about your services.

Our guide explains:

  • How to develop a robust social media strategy
  • The basics of Facebook advertising 
  • Email marketing best practices

If you haven’t employed these tactics or if previous efforts have failed to deliver an adequate return on investment, download the Deluxe Guide to Online Marketing and Promotion for the Real Estate Industry, and get your marketing efforts on track.

Ready to renovate your digital presence? Get started with our online marketing and promotion guide.

Download the eBook

(It’s free!)


The secrets to great logo design

by John Habib
John Habib

Our May 16 webinar, The Secrets to Great Logo Design, gave attendees a look inside the Deluxe logo design process, and was filled with our designers’ insights on illustrated logos. Here’s what we learned from Creative Director, Cono Fusco, and Logo Designer, Daniel Liete.

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What makes a great wedding logo?

by Tori Tsu
Tori Tsu

‘Tis the season! Season for flora to bloom, fauna to twitterpate and, of course, brides and grooms to say “I do.” To celebrate spring wedding season, we took a look at some of the logos our team of designers has created over the years for small businesses in the wedding and events industry.

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Make your mark | Create your own logo in minutes

by John Habib
John Habib

Great news for anyone who has dreamed of designing their own logo for their business! Deluxe’s online Logo Maker allows you to create a stunning logo in mere minutes. 

Nothing is more important to your company’s brand than its logo. A professional emblem tells current and prospective customers that you stand ready to serve them in a reliable, reputable manner.

Now, creating your own professional-looking logo is easier than ever. With thousands of free templates to start from, the Logo Maker lets you customize your choice until it looks exactly the way you want. Design, and redesign, as many logos as you want without paying until you’re ready to download.

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Is a hand-drawn illustration right for your logo?

by John Habib
John Habib

Clean lines, modern typography and a sleek style often work wonders in a well-designed logo. For certain businesses, however, a strong custom illustration makes a logo truly embed itself in customers’ consciousnesses. 

A custom illustration logo is a brand symbol featuring a detailed, hand-drawn image. Famous examples abound, from the NFL shield to the LG emblem to Disney’s palace and signature combo. With their handcrafted origins, custom illustration logos can take a bit longer to develop than other logos. But because of their potential to be exceptionally vibrant and memorable, they are often worth the time and effort.

Custom illustrations have never gone out of style and are one of our 20 logo trends to watch in 2017. How do you know if a custom illustration logo is right for your business? We spoke with Deluxe logo designer Daniel Liete to learn more about how these unique designs work. 

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