Designing a Church Logo?

Discover the 10 Commandments for a Great Church Logo

YOU KNOW YOU NEED A LOGO BUT DON'T KNOW WHAT YOU'RE LOOKING FOR? Your first instinct may be to go with your gut, but can you be sure your response will produce a well designed logo that will represent your church? What should you look for in a church logo? With over 2,000 logo projects under our belt, we’d like to pass along 10 rules we think you’ll find helpful.

1. Keep it Simple Simple logos have a bigger impact than complicated ones and are easier to understand. You may be tempted to include multiple symbols in your logo, but the reality is, the more you try to say the less you actually get across. Keep your message and your design as simple as possible.

2. Use the Right Fonts Limit the number of fonts you use. One or two work well  – more than that tends to get confusing. Make sure the fonts have the right feel for your church. As a general rule, sans serif fonts give your logo a contemporary look, while serif fonts usually look more classic or traditional.  

3. Choose Colors - More is Less (Costly) One or two color printing used to cost less, but now full color printing is less expensive. From a design standpoint, fewer colors in your logo makes it easier and quicker to understand. Aim for simplicity for design sake and go ahead and print in full color.

4. Get it Professionally Designed The cost of your logo isn’t really your final cost. You’ll be applying it to your website, signs, banners, bulletins, brochures, business cards and a bunch of other things - for years. Getting a poorly designed free or low cost logo will affect the way people think about your church. If your church aren't well designed and don’t attract people, you haven’t saved anything.

5. Think Fit As you consider the new design, think about how well it fits. Does it fit with the personality of your church? If you’re in a permanent location, does it fit with the architecture? When you think of the people you’re trying to reach, does it fit with them? You want your logo to reflect the personality and style of your church, and for your congregation to think, “That’s us!’

6. Design for Adaptability Think of the things you’ll apply your logo to - website, business cards, signage, bulletins, and anything else large and small. Make sure it will fit the proportions and is recognizable in small sizes. Website logos usually work best in a horizontal format, while phone apps work best with the logo icon in a square.

7. Consider Brand Equity If you’re redesigning your logo think about carrying over a feature or two to your new logo. The familiarity of your old logo has some built-in brand equity (trust) that can help your new logo be accepted more quickly – especially among long-time members who may be resistant to change. If your community is familiar with your logo this can help them connect with the new logo, too.

8. Aim for Staying Power Be careful with trying to be trendy. What’s in today is likely to look outdated in a few months. With the right theme and solid design you’ll have a design that stays current for a long time. Look at Coca-Cola, Ford, Nike, 3M and other companies whose logos have lasted decades. You can update the colors, fonts and minor changes to freshen a good design without starting over.

9. Be DistinctBeing confused with another organization because your logos look alike is bad news for both of you. Go for a logo design that stands out and gives you a unique identity within your sphere of influence. If you’re a small church with a local influence, a predesigned logo can work well and save you money as long as no one in your area is using the same design, while large churches or churches with a large regional presence will need a custom design.

10. Make Sure it Can Scale to large Sizes Many logo files are pixel-based, which works well for web and desktop publishing as long as it doesn’t have to be enlarged. For signs, apparel and other large uses you’ll need a vector file (made of lines and shapes, not pixels). To guarantee your logo will work for every use, make sure a vector.eps file is included in your set of files.