Are you doing some big things with your podcast? If not, this article is not for you. However, if you are trying to brand yourself, your podcast, develop a website, and much more then you might want to consider a creating a logo for your podcast that will match everything else. I would guess that 95% of all podcasters actually don't need to take this in consideration. Most just want to record their show and get it on iTunes and then move along. There is a sliver though that really wants to amplify the effects of branding. This is a perfectly good consideration to have if you are trying to seriously brand yourself.
While in this post I can't make or tell you what your logo is, I can give you some guidelines and information that might help you on your journey. I am a professional graphic designer with 11 years of experience. I hold a B.F.A in Visual Communications. I have worked with global companies and built an extensive amount of web development and corporate identity projects over the last decade. I feel that I have the credentials to help in this journey.
This is the first step in getting something that represents your brand. After all, this is just the face of it and not the brand itself. Your logo will help connect your audience beyond your audio show. This might be important if you are considering a second show or expanding into another medium like Youtube. You should take the following into consideration when brainstorming you new podcast logo.
Talk about the ideas and find someone that can brainstorm with you. Write everything down, and doodle as much as you can. You need to keep a record of all the ideas you come up with.
- Imagery that connects what you do with your audience.
- The topics you cover and how the logo reflects that.
- At least 4 concepts or doodles to get ideas flowing.
Once you have done some brainstorming, you need to start looking at your ideas. You need to play with the winners and weed out the logos that don't really fit your brand. This is the point I start getting some opinions from at least 5 other people. You can see the AM Podcast Network logo. It took time, but I knew going in what I wanted to use for colors, and the idea that the entire network will be about podcasts so it should have a microphone. My test bed of people I showed this to agreed. Remember it's not about your opinion, your feelings about "being overplayed", or even if it's cliche'. It's about connecting your audience to your brand. If it doesn't do that, then you need to reconsider. There is no point in you falling in love with a design that carries no meaning to the people you are trying to connect with. Often, it's said that design isn't for the designer.
Once you have finished figuring out which logo really works the best you need to finalize it and start testing it out on a bigger audience. You should be able to use your logo in white, black, and colors. Your logo should be able to be used in many situations so even having a couple versions of it, perhaps with or without text is ideal. The AM Podcast logo was developed exactly with that in mind. I need that logo to work across social media platforms, this website, perhaps t-shirts, and more. It's a simple 2-color design (cheaper for printing), and it's easy to read. I make sure any logo I create meets the following criteria:
If it doesn't meet all of those marks, and maybe some personal goals you have, then it's not the logo you want. Spend some time on it and get it right the first time. You can go to iTunes and see that a lot of the major podcasters that use logos or their name itself as a logo. There is a reason why Mitt Romney and President Obama use a logo for their names. I think once you think about the bigger picture you will recognize the need for all of this. Your medium is an audio one, but to bring people in to use that sense you have to stimulate them visually. It completely makes sense for some one trying to brand themselves or their message.
- minimal colors
- easy to read
- web 2.0'ish (clean design)
- connects with my product or brand
Places to Hire From
You may not be able to design a logo. You may need to put that in front of a professional. Remember you don't have to pay $1,000 for a logo, although I suppose you could. You can try any freelancer website, fiverr.com, or even Logo Lounge. Ensure you do your research though. You need to find a portfolio that matches your end result the best, you need to interview a designer if you have questions. You need to offer a very clear and concise goal to ensure a smooth development. You could end up like Coca-Cola with a logo that lasts 100 year or more. Whatever you do though, don't change your logo frequently. You will disconnect from your audience and it will become a negative thing for your brand.
You can check out the little bit of audio I did from Soundcloud on this as well. Hope you enjoy and make sure to follow us for more information!
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Defining Your Podcast With A Logo
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