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The why, when, and what of church logo design

Written by Mark Steinbrueck

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It’s not a term that many churches use or like to use.

It is often thought of as a business term and shouldn’t be used in ministry.  However, the reality is that churches need branding like any other organization.

What is branding? 

In a broad sense, branding is everything an organization does to shape public perception of it. A more narrow definition is the creation of a name and easily-identifiable symbol which are then used in all of that organization’s communication.

Every church has a name but some skip or struggle with the creation and use of an easily-identifiable symbol, aka… a logo.

Why is a having a logo for your church or ministry so important? 

You are going to have many different places where you are going to try to get people to notice your organization:  Signage on your building, signs around town, your website, shirts, hats, pens, coffee mugs, and possibly sponsorship/partnership opportunities with organizations in your area.  All of these should have a consistent representation of your church, so as people see your logo around town, they remember your church.

When does an organization need a new logo? 

Here are the 4 main situations where you should consider getting a new logo:

  1. Your organization is new
  2. Your organization has moved or changed names
  3. Your organization has been around for a while but never created a logo
  4. Your existing logo is old and outdated.

The first two situations are fairly straight forward, however, the third and fourth scenarios are what we see most often at OurChurch.Com.

Often when a ministry is new and on a very limited budget, any cost that isn’t absolutely necessary for survival is put on the back burner.  However, not having a logo can hinder your organization’s potential growth.  So, if your ministry doesn’t have a logo, I suggest getting one as soon as possible.

The fourth scenario (having a logo that is old and outdated), can be a bit more difficult to realize.  Logos should reviewed every 2-3 years and most of the time, the use of the existing logo is fine.  However, over time there may be some subtle change that are made to the logo to keep it current, so it doesn’t look outdated.  This means that you may be able to keep the primary theme of the logo but make minor updates to keep it current.

Why is it important to keep your logo current? 

Design trends change and it is likely that a logo that was created 10-20 years ago, looks like it was created 10-20 years ago.  If people think your logo looks outdated, they will think that your organization is outdated as well.

If you are in need of a new or revised logo, here are

4 Tips for Hiring a Logo Designer:

  1. Ask for examples of their work:  Different designers have different styles, so your style may not match that of every designer.  Ask for 3-5 examples of logos they have created to make sure you like the style of their work.
  2. Ask about the process:  How many initial concepts will they create?  Do they allow for revisions of the logo, and if so, how many?  Setting these expectations are important so you and the designer are on the same page.
  3. Make sure that the designer will provide multiple formats of the logo:  It is important to have the logo in formats that are good for digital and print use.  You should also get the logo in different sizes, with a transparent background, and a vectored version, so it can be used anywhere from letterhead, to your website, to shirts, and even billboards.
  4. Make sure you can actually speak with your designer:  There are many cheap logo design websites where you never speak with the designer creating the logo.  However, when it comes to design, nothing can take the place of a live conversation (not a chat or IM).  Sometimes it is difficult to express in written words what you want in a logo or revisions you want made, so it is important to have the ability to speak with the designer creating your logo.

I strive for two things in design: simplicity and clarity. Great design is born of those two things.  Lindon Leader

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Is your church in need of a new or revised logo? 

Check out some of the logos that we have created, and schedule a time to chat by filling out the form below.

Adding a new logo is a great way to add new life to your website, and it’s one of the 10 Ways to Grow Your Love for Your Website we’re talking about this month.

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    About the author

    Mark Steinbrueck

    Mark Steinbrueck is President and Co-founder of OurChurch.Com. He is a member of Generations Christian Church, a husband and father of 3. He is a huge Cardinals baseball fan and bleeds Garnet and Gold.

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