Lexi’s step-by-step custom logo design process

Process is everything when it comes to bridging the gap between client and creative. Professional creatives have refined-over-time procedural approaches to every service they offer. The more clarity we can gain up front, the better the end product will be (and the more enjoyable the experience for all parties involved).

Take a peek at the refined, fun, and results-focused process I’ve developed for custom logo design, after having had designed dozens of custom logos for varying clients over the years. If you’re considering hiring a custom logo designer, I’d love the opportunity to walk through this process with you!

Step 1: You fill out my Logo Design Discovery located here.

Tip: Take your time with this. Feel into it. Take it seriously. This is my first impression of what you’re looking for and the more detail you can provide here, the deeper my initial understanding of your vision will be.

Step 2: I create a mood board for your logo/brand on Pinterest.

Tip: If you don’t already have an account on Pinterest, go ahead and create one. I’ll ask you to leave a comment on each pin I add to your mood board. I’ll want to hear your reactions — positive and negative — as this will help us become visually aligned before I get started on the first pass of logo comps. I’ll add photos, fonts, color palettes, and other graphics to this mood board. I’ll probably include some that I know you won’t like because it is equally helpful for me to hear what won’t work for you as it is to hear what will work for you. Again, take your time with this as it helps me intuitively tap into your project.

Step 3: You provide your reactions to each pin on the Pinterest mood board.

Tip: Log in with your Pinterest account and comment on every pin on the mood board. What do you like and why? What don’t you like and why? Do you like part of a pin, but not the whole thing? I want to hear all of your reactions.

Step 4: I create the first round — 3 unique logo comps.

FYI: I’ll show you each unique logo comp mocked up with a few different treatments. You’ll see how each comp might look on a light background, a dark background, and possibly on a business card. I want you to get a feel for how each direction could work in a variety of different settings. I’ll denote each comp with “A," "B," and "C” so you know what’s what. In the end, you’ll want a logo that’s flexible enough to work printed in a magazine, animated on your website, or possibly converted to grayscale. That’s why I like to show each comp mocked up with different treatments.

Step 5: You provide honest, clear feedback.

Tip: Read my blog post How to give effective design feedback here. It’s important that you are clear on what you want and that you can verbalize that to me so we can keep the process moving forward in a constructive manner.

Step 6: I incorporate your feedback into a second round of logos.

FYI: Here, we should be focused on winnowing down to 1 or 2 of the directions from the first round. I make tweaks and refinements based on your feedback and deliver a revised second round.

Step 7: We repeat steps 5 and 6 a couple more times if needed.

FYI: Included in my base cost is up to 3 rounds of revisions. I want you to be 100% happy so I am willing to go above and beyond. However, if we are well exceeding 3 rounds, especially if it’s because you’ve changed your mind and the feedback or creative direction you provided at earlier points in the process has changed, I will bill hourly.

Step 8: You select your dream logo!

Tip: Pop the bubbly! You have now decided on the look and feel for your brand. Your new logo will empower you to build visual recognition for your business across your website, in your advertising, in your email marketing, and more. I hope to be part of the process along the way.

Step 9: I send over a .zip with a plethora of logo assets and a mini graphics standards manual.

Tip: Download the fonts from the graphics standards manual and start incorporating them into your documents. Forward along the graphics standards manual any time you have something printed with your logo in it — the printer will appreciate being able to match your brand colors precisely. As a general rule of thumb, use files ending with .PDF for print and files ending with .PNG for web. Files ending with .AI are master files and can only be opened and manipulated by professional designers who have the industry standard logo design software, Adobe Illustrator.

While creative professionals are often viewed as artists, we don’t only see ourselves that way. Yes, we utilize artistic skill and vision to bring your dreams to life, but we also know we are being hired to create an end deliverable for you, the client. This custom logo design process helps to ensure the skill from the designer (me!) and the vision from the client (you!) meet in harmony, resulting in a strong, memorable logo for your business!

Ready to create your dream logo?