Thinking to use a crowdsourced logo for your brand?
Well, think again if you truly want to make your brand strong, successful and evergreen!
Anyone can fall for a crowdsourced logo with claims like cheaper price, save time, and get quick deliveries but it has another side that very few care to know while working on their brand.
Are you sure that the crowdsourced logo would be perfect in every way?
And do you believe that a crowdsourced logo can stand the test of times when the competition gets fierce?
Before you make any decision with respect to crowdsourced logos, I want you to spare a few minutes and here me out WHY IT’S NOT WORTH IT!
Here are some interesting facts about crowdsourced logos and why I personally endorse custom logo designs only.
If you’re not clear about crowdsourced logos, read this!
A crowdsourced logo is designed by various designers via online competitions rather than assigning your logo project to a single creative being.
There are several design platforms such as 99Designs, Design Crowd and Fiverr where you can post your logo project, organize a design event and get unlimited logo submissions. You can set a deadline for the competition to end, submit the prize money and give out basic design guidelines for the designers.
Once the competition ends, you can pick the winner with the most accurate crowdsourced logo and give your brand a corporate face via that logo. In this way, you get to have a nice logo design without paying much and offering new graphic designers a chance to polish their skills.
Sounds very easy, right?
If we believe everything that these crowdsourcing logo service providers claim, life will be very easy for every business owner.
Wait, don’t fall for all the sugar-coated features that these crowdsourcing platforms claim to offer. There are some ugly truths about a crowdsourced logo that must be told so you can decide what’s in favour of your brand.
Read along as I dissect each claim and tell you why using a crowdsourced logo is a bad idea for your brand’s overall health.
Let’s talk about the design competition part!
Every platform allows you to arrange a design competition, give out the basic logo designing requirement and the party begins.
But do you believe that someone would come up with an accurate logo once you say “Alexa, design”?
Because things really don’t work like that in branding and logo designing stuff.
There needs to be a proper meeting, a discussion session, and a reviewing segment to ensure that the logo is perfectly in alignment with your branding goals.
And these competitions offer 0% percent interactions between the client and the designer. Then how can you expect to have the best logo design to represent your brand?
So, the very first reason to not opt for a crowdsourced logo design is the lack of interactions between you and the designers.
An important read for you: 09 Reasons Why Only Stupid Business Owners Use Ready-Made Logos?
Generally, a logo design process involves several stages!
When you hire a logo designer, you get to avail the brainstorm session, have a few drafts to select and proceed further, and lastly, you get to give your opinion on the semi-final draft.
And there are several other occasions when you can ask about colour choice, font selection and basic logotype ideas.
But here in crowdsourced logo’s scenario, you just post a project, invite a group of experienced (and noobs) to participate and cross your fingers until you get a suitable logo.
No messages, no feedback and no occasions of interacting with the designer!
Still, if you opt for a crowdsourced logo design, you risk your whole branding even after knowing that it will take much of your time and there’s no guarantee to find a suitable logo option.
Ever tried to know how each designer works on a crowdsourced platform?
Since the organizer would choose only one logo and the rest of the participants can keep their submissions.
According to them, it’s their hard work that shouldn’t be in the Recycle Bin so they keep the files for another competition. And not just that, they make a few adjustments and resubmit their entry with slight changes in hopes to win the prize.
To some extent, it’s okay but things start to appear ugly when they resubmit the same logo in different variations. And worse, some design enthusiast (claiming to be a professional) steals their idea.
And if, by any chance, you get to pick that logo design, you’re simply risking your brand’s credibility.
In simple words, using a crowdsourced logo brings a high plagiarism risk, too, with it!
Usually, businesses on a limited branding budget opt for a crowdsourced logo which labels them as cheap brands.
See, everyone knows the ugly truth about designer’s exploitation in such platforms where some of the clients never pay them at all for the designing services. And if you opt for a crowdsourced logo design, people might question your honesty, your credibility as a brand.
Because if you can’t pay (or pay enough) to the designers who invested their time designing your brand’s corporate face, how can you claim to care about the consumers?
And this can jeopardize your brand name from even the very start of the branding journey.
A crowdsourced logo design competition usually receives about 40-50 submissions!
You might think that it’s a good sign to have more options but don’t forget that you’re a human with limited capabilities. Having so many (and unmonitored) logo options may exhaust you and there’s a risk of ignoring a suitable option just because you don’t have time to review them all.
And this can lower the logo’s quality which ultimately impacts on your brand’s overall score.
So, you must not settle for a poor logo just to save money and this is one of the many reasons why every professional discourages using a crowdsourced logo.
Every business invests on its branding, its logo design so they can avail some benefits in return.
Do you think that a crowdsourced logo that lacks many features such as attractiveness and alignment with your brand’s vision would be able to benefit your brand in any way?
There are already so many issues with a crowdsourced logo that it can’t stand the test of times when the competition gets tougher. And you’ll have to reinvest in a custom logo design soon after discovering its ineffectiveness.
I hope now you know the real reason for NOT opting for a crowdsourced logo design. Before we conclude this topic, let’s revise our memory on how using a custom logo design can impact on your branding.
Here are some interesting benefits that only a custom logo design can offer to your brand.
One of the benefits of using a custom logo design is that it remains close to your brand’s core objectives!
When you sit with the graphic designer, you can share the key objectives of your brand or the mission statement. This way, you can ensure that your logo design would represent the brand in its exact spirits when you start the branding activities.
Take Burger King’s example and how they keep the main product, the burgers, in the centre of the logo. That’s the kind of effect you can have with a custom logo design instead of a non-relevant, unappealing crowdsourced logo.
Adding class in the brand’s corporate face is another objective that you can achieve via a custom logo design. Because you’ll get only 2-3 seconds to impress the viewer and the focus shall be diverted to another brand. So, cash this duration and give your brand an irresistible feel via a custom logo design.
Take a look at Audi’s logo that uses 4 circles and gives the brand a distinct, fine feel!
You can work with your graphic designer to ensure that your brand’s corporate face has an awesome feel that anyone who sees it for the first time, falls in love with it.
There’s another benefit of investing in a custom logo design – you get to have a stronger brand identity!
See, your brand and a logo are not the same but your logo does help the brand in seeking customer’s recognition and having an identity.
Let’s understand it by a riddle!
It’s a fruit and someone has taken a bite, guess the brand.
Did you call Apple?
You’ve guessed it right!
That’s the kind of effect that you can have with a custom logo design that people will recognize you even if you omit the brand name from the logo.
Your investing in a custom logo design shows how serious you’re about the brand!
When you opt for a crowdsourced logo, it may give your consumers a wrong impression that you’re a cheap brand (even when you’re not). Because people notice everything when selecting a brand and this minor negligence may drag your brand to the wrong side of the discussion.
On the contrary, a custom logo design ensures that you’re a serious brand and won’t disappoint them with your products/services.
You should also read: 9 professional logo design benefits you hardly know about
As I told you earlier, a crowdsourced logo may not be up to the quality standards which may become a reason for low remembrance score.
Take Nike as an example that uses a (tick) otherwise famous as swoosh!
Whenever someone sees this swoosh or mentions it, everybody in the room knows that they’re talking about Nike.
So, invest in a custom logo design so you can have the same kind of effects where people can recognize your brand easily upon first look at it.
A crowdsourced logo does invite you with various enticing features but fails to live up to these promises. On the other hand, your brand demands a logo that is designed with due care and meets the design and branding standards which is only possible if you opt for a custom logo design.
Folks at FullStop are always up for helping you from having a fantastic custom logo as well as perfecting your brand’s alignment with the success. Adios!
Waqas D. is the co-founder of the branding and website agency, FullStop™. He supercharges brands by crafting memorable logos, brand identities and engaging websites. Besides thousands of startups and medium-size businesses, FullStop has worked with likes of Microsoft & L’Oréal. View our portfolio or get in touch.
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