Investing in professional branding is crucial for any business, large or small. A well-constructed brand identity can go a long way in helping a company establish credibility, trust, and recognition in its industry. Using a cheap logo template, however, could be a costly mistake if you're planning for long-term success.
While it may be tempting to take the quick and inexpensive route with a logo template, these solutions often lack the quality, uniqueness, and creativity of a professional designer’s work. Professional designers are able to create a logo that not only looks great but also tells a story about the company (and not the story of a hundred other companies). This is especially important when it comes to brand recognition—a well-crafted logo is often the first thing a potential customer will see and remember, and it's pretty much the face of your business as a brand.
It's important to note that there is a huge difference between a logo and a brand identity. While a log is part of your brand identity, it's not enough to carry your business to success for the long haul. Your brand identity is made up of the visual identity of your business— your logos, colors, fonts, brand patterns, icons, and more, combined with your brand messaging, voice, brand positioning, unique selling proposition (USP), and how you show up for your customers and clients.
Your branding should create a unique branded experience for your customers and clients that they can't get anywhere else, and evoke certain feelings in your audience. For example, Coach is a very high-end brand, with high-quality products, and when you walk into one of their stores, you have this luxurious experience that's unique to Coach, and when you've made your purchase, or even if you're just browsing- you feel this feeling of luxury, and quality, and status. Sure, you could buy a knock-off, but if it doesn't have that legendary Coach logo, it's not the same. This is because of Coach's branding, and the brand experience they create for their customers.
A professional branding package from a professional designer should also include a comprehensive style guide or brand guidelines that outline your company’s new visual identity and provides you with "tips" and best practices for using your new visual identity out in the world. This guide ensures that all branding elements—such as logos, fonts, and colors—are used consistently and properly throughout all marketing materials and platforms, both online and in real life. Having a unified, consistent brand identity is essential for building customer trust and loyalty and building brand recognition (kind of like how you instantly recognize the Nike check logomark or the Starbucks logo).
When it comes to investing in professional branding, the benefits far outweigh the cost. A cheap logo template may seem like an easy fix for a business, but it could end up costing more in the long run— especially when you consider having to go back and update your logo on all your marketing materials, product packaging, or labels, all your online platforms, print materials, stickers, and more. Professional branding is an investment that will pay off in the form of customer loyalty and recognition.