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Oh the Places You’ll Go: A Comprehensive Logo Checklist

Your logo is the first thing people see from your business. Just the sight of it can elicit an emotional response from potential customers. Just think of how excited you get when you see Starbucks’ green mermaid or Dunkin Donuts orange and pink D’s. Now, maybe I’m thinking too much about my morning coffee, but regardless, your logo is how people recognize your company.

How do you ensure that it can be seen everywhere, in all different sizes, without changing any of its colors or characteristics? Logo file types.

What you need for your logo to go anywhere. As you’re likely trying to put your logo anywhere you can, from a coffee cup to a sponsorship t-shirt, you’re going to need file types that can do it all. Let’s take a look at some of the available options.

  • You should have a Vector version of it – EPS, PDF, AI. Vector is probably the most important logo file type because it allows you to make your logo very large without sacrificing the quality of your resolution. If you have a JPEG version of your logo, you won’t be able to make it bigger and still be clear. If you want to see your logo on a billboard, you want a Vector version of it. You may not be able to open these files types without the correct software, but rest assured that your designer will know what to do with them.
  • It should have a high resolution – PNG and JPG. I consider any file type over 1 megabyte to be high resolution. PNG’s does not put a background to your file, which makes it easy to seamlessly blend into advertisements and other marketing materials.
  • You should have the option to see it on a light background or a dark background. You need to know what your logo is going to look like on a dark background, a white background, a blue background, etc. You need your logo to be flexible, so you need to know all the different ways you should be using it so that you know how NOT to use it.
  • Get vertical and horizontal versions of your logo. A lot of social media images are square, so sometimes you need a more vertical logo to go into those spaces.
  • Establish your colors across all media. When creating the logo, it’s important to see what colors you want to use to represent your company. After you’ve established your colors, you don’t want your logo to look different because of how and where you printed them! For that we need to talk about Pantone colors, CMYK, RGB and Hex# colors.
    • Pantone colors – this is a set color system used by printers that is going to be the same no matter where you print it, from here to Japan. Because of its seamless integration, Pantone is typically more expensive.
    • CMYK – Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black (or Key for the K) are your normal printer colors. They are the most widely used and cheapest way to print. These color mixes can vary from printer to printer depending on how well the print machine is calibrated. It’s good to know what your Pantone colors are and what their CMYK equivalents would be so that you can better match them when you are printing your materials at many different places.
    • RGB and Hex# colors – Red, Green, and Blue make up the colors that you see on the web. Sometimes you will also see these as 6 letters or numbers with a # sign in front of them. For instance, #000000 is the color back and #FFFFFF is the color white.

You want your colors to be as close as possible no matter where your logo is used. The more you can narrow down those colors, the better it’s going to be for you in the end. If you don’t get this information at the beginning, it will take some work to figure out what your color numbers will be across all mediums. It’s easier to do it right the first time and save it in a safe location.

HighRock Studios color sheet

Back it up. If you can’t find your logo, how can it go where you need it? Make sure you save it in as many places as you can – from the cloud, to Dropbox, to a CD, in an email to yourself, in an email to your mom! SAVE. THAT. LOGO. The more places you save it, the better. You never know what you’re going to be asked to sponsor something or have that logo printed on a t-shirt. Your designer should always have a backup file just in case, but you never know what can happen with technology, so save it EVERYWHERE.

Use your brand usage sheet. Your designer should give you a brand usage sheet. It will show you how you can use the logo, like how much spacing should be around it, what colors should be in it, or what size it needs to be to post it on a certain material.

HighRock Logo shown multiple times

If you’re using photos:

  • have photos of your products, employees, and locations
  • use the largest file size possible
  • have permission from the photographer to use them
  • hire a professional
  • get them as a JPG – it’s easier than a Word file

Follow this checklist and your logo is sure to look good anywhere and everywhere! If you still have questions, or if you want one of our designers to look over your logo, give HighRock a call! Learn what your logo can do!