I’m Stuck with a Bad Logo — Now What?

Way back when you started your busi­ness you didn’t have a lot of money, so you cut a few cor­ners on your logo. Either you designed it your­self (and you’re not a designer) or you bought a pre-made logo from one of those $99 logo web­sites or pos­si­bly you hired your cousin’s sister-in-law’s kid ’cause she’s “good at art and stuff”.

What do you do?
Hav­ing a bad logo will def­i­nitely hold you back when you’re look­ing to take your busi­ness to the next level. You may not even real­ize you have a bad logo, but you find that you can’t seem to gain trac­tion with your brand.

There are two approaches to chang­ing your logo, each with their own mer­its and challenges.

The first is to toss the old one and start from scratch. The advan­tage to this approach is you get the strong, tar­geted logo you wanted right away (assum­ing you hired a good designer).

The prob­lem with this is that maybe you have a lot of clients who won’t rec­og­nize you when they see that new, splashy, com­pletely dif­fer­ent logo from the one you had. With this approach, you’ll also need to launch a cam­paign to exist­ing cus­tomers telling them all about your new look. And depend­ing on what you offer, you may need to reas­sure them with copy like, “brand new look, same great service.”

Depend­ing on how big your com­pany is or if your reach is wide, this could be an expen­sive endeavor. You might need to send a printed direct mail piece in advance let­ting them know about the upcom­ing change, and fol­low up with a sec­ond after the launch. You’ll want to announce it in emails and on your web­site and on your Face­book page if you have one. You might even need to include new tv and radio spots, if you’ve adver­tised there in the past.

The sec­ond option is if you have a good idea, but a bad, or dated look­ing exe­cu­tion. You can evolve this type of logo over time, mak­ing small changes over the course of a year or sev­eral years. This solu­tion doesn’t require the big announce­ment and expense of the first option, but it requires patience and an ongo­ing rela­tion­ship with your designer.

When is a bad logo a good thing
Does your logo look dated and cheap? If you’re in the dis­count busi­ness, or sell cheap prod­ucts, a bad, dated logo can actu­ally help you. That’s because it’s con­vey­ing just how cheap you are, which is what we call a sell­ing feature.

Ulti­mately, you don’t have to put up with a bad logo. The sooner you change it the sooner you can start build­ing and posi­tion­ing your brand exactly where you want it.

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