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Smashing Logo Design: The Art of Creating Visual Identities by Gareth Hardy

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Chapter 13: Setting Logo Usage Guidelines

The logo is complete, now what? Do you just let the client ride off into the sunset with your design and let them slap the logo on anything they want? The answer is no, not without guidance to ensure that the identity you’ve created remains consistent. Your involvement in a logo design doesn’t end when the files are ready to be given to the client. The final stage in the process is setting logo usage guidelines.

If you’ve designed logos in the past, the client may have made some changes to your final artwork after you handed over the deliverables. They might have added a new obscure font because “we found it online and it looks really cool!” They might have even changed the colors because they think “it pops.” Seeing your work treated in such a way can be demoralizing (not to mention ruin the identity you created), but you can prevent these situations with logo usage guidelines.

Logo usage guidelines will be useful to anyone who needs to use the logo, now or in the future—including other professionals within the creative industry. The client may hire another designer or design team down the road; if so, the client should give the new designer your logo usage guidelines to make sure that his decisions conform to the identity. Printers also may refer to the guidelines if they’re not sure which color reproduction method to use and which inks to select.

The Purpose of Logo Usage Guidelines

Imagine you’ve just purchased a new piece of technology. ...

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