How to prevent getting ripped off with your logo design
Author: Lyndsey Yates
Imagine you’re driving along and you see a van with a logo on. Your company logo. Except, it’s not your company van. It’s some other company… in the same industry, with the exact same logo. You’d be a little gutted, right? Perhaps confused? Angry?
It must be something that happens to roofers all the time. Because on a seven hour car journey a few weeks ago, I saw the same logo used three times. By three different companies. They all had a different name, and the colours on two out of the three were different… but it was the same logo.
The thing is, it’s not the first time I’ve seen a roofing company with this logo either. I’ve noticed it before.
So, when I returned home, once I’d recovered from my seven hour drive and had something to eat that wasn’t going to cost me a weeks worth of wages (service stations, don’t get me started), I did a little digging.
In just 10 minutes of googling, I found all these companies with that very same logo:
I can’t make the assumption that all these companies (or all the others with the same logo) were ripped off. The original roof drawing is available to download from Shutterstock (and probably other stock sites), and so someone at the company may well have just paid a few quid to download it, bunged a name on there and that was that.
But I’ll bet there’s a few dishonest designers out there who have sold this logo to a client as their own design. The client thinking they were getting a logo unique to their company.
So, how can you avoid this happening to you? It’s really simple – just take note of these three suggestions:
1 – Don’t go for the cheapest option
The cheapest option is probably downloading a logo from a stock site, putting your company name on it and calling your brand done. Just remember that millions of other people also have access to the exact same stock images, and the likelihood that someone has already done exactly that is high.
But this point doesn’t just apply to stock sites, it also applies when seeking out a designer. The cheapest person will be cheap for a reason – they’re not putting the effort into creating an original logo applicable to your company. They’re giving you something off the shelf.
2 – Make sure you write a brief
Asking for someone to ‘design a logo for my roofing company’ and giving them nothing more to go on is going to result in a rubbish piece of work. Your logo has so much more behind it. It should be just the tip of the iceberg for your company brand.
You should have done market research, or paid someone to do it. You should have an idea of who your target customer is, what kind of qualities you want to portray as a business, and who your competitors are.
If writing a brief is something that worries you, click here take a look at my blog about your first time with a designer. This will help you know what to expect.
3 – Specify that you want a custom created, unique logo applicable to your brand. Then protect it.
It seems obvious, but if you don’t specify this there will be people out there who will take advantage. Make sure you are supplied with and READ the terms of service. Get everything agreed before the work starts.
Ask to see their thought processes and drawings. Be involved in the process.
Once it is complete and you have chosen a design, just do a quick google image search to check there’s nothing identical.
Then, so that your logo is protected from copycats, get it trademarked. Your designer could help with this, but it is something you can do yourself on the gov.uk website: https://www.gov.uk/how-to-register-a-trade-mark/apply
There are a lot of logos out there almost identical to the examples I’ve shown in this post. This really doesn’t have to be the case. For some reason the roofing sector is rife with sub-par, lazy, unimaginative logos. It’s not the only victim though.
If you would like a new logo for your company, Nine Dots Creative can do that! Get in touch to discuss your requirements.