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Is A Logo Design Competition Worth The Risk?

Is A Logo Design Competition Worth The Risk?

“The Logo acts as the face of a brand.”

Something you have heard a thousand or even millions of times. It's an investment that you should make very wisely, considering all the facts. Users merely take a couple of seconds to form an impression of your logo. It highly depends on this deciding factor whether or not they want to connect with your brand. Or even explore more about your business.

However, the importance of a high-quality logo is not something to debate. IT'S AN ABSOLUTE MUST! But the way to achieve a logo that meets all your needs requires some deep research and decision-making. Numerous logo creation methods are available, making it easier to find a suitable option for all sizes of businesses and budgets. No matter if you are looking for logo symbols or animation from professional logo designers.

One of the methods is a logo design competition. Basically, in this method, you crowdsource a cheap logo design. Many renowned brands like GAP, the City of Florence, and others actively participate.

A large number of people are also in favour of such competitions. Mainly because this enables you to receive hundreds or even thousands of ideas for a low price. On the contrary, some oppose it as it is somewhat like blindly throwing darts at a board. The results are not guaranteed.

This leads us to the question, is it worth the risk? In today's article, we will dive deeply into this topic. So sit back, relax, and read this article till the very end to discover the right option for you.

Logo Design Contest vs Professional Designers

Logo Design ContestProfessional Designers
Quantity: Logo competitions help come up with hundreds of concepts.Most logo companies offer more than 10 initial concepts until you are satisfied with one.
Time: Most contests take around 3 to 6 days. But in some cases, it can also take a month.  The turnaround time entirely depends on the designer. Not to mention, they can also take additional time if they have to rework their concept.
Plagiarism: One of the most common criticisms of logo contests is that some entries are a duplicate of already existing designs.With a professional logo design company, the artwork will be original and custom-made for your brand to meet your needs.
Control: When it comes to logo contests, you have complete control over what and which one to choose.It’s best to collaborate with a professional company if you have a clear vision in your mind.

What Is a Logo Design Competition?

Simply put, a logo design competition is a method in which you hire a company or site to host an online contest instead of paying a single professional graphic designer. For this purpose, all you have to do is create a brief. Afterwards, countless designers submit their artwork, and you get to pick the best!

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Things To Know About Logo Design Contest Sites

When discussing logo design competitions, it's necessary to know a few basics about the sites that conduct such contests. This will help you better understand the entire process and everything in between.

People and businesses looking for their brand logo design can publish their needs, along with guidelines and a small prize pool, on a website that hosts logo design contests. By the end of the contest, the members, who can number in the thousands, will have created dozens, if not hundreds, of designs for the winner to choose from.

The contest organiser then “rewards” the selected logo creator with the prize. Or it is also possible to declare that there is no clear winner and reopen the project for other logo submissions.

That's a pretty sweet and extremely beneficial offer, if I say so myself…

There must be a hundred different layouts; each would only cost a few dollars.

How Does Logo Contest Sites Function?

Logo Design Competition Website

Many businesses hold contests for their logos. Although each plan offers different features, they follow the same fundamental workflow. Platforms for well-known logo design competitions include The Logo Co., DesignCrowd, and HiretheWorld. All of them entail the following actions:

1 – Brief It Out

When registering with a website and launching a contest, you must provide a brief for your work. It should contain all necessary details, such as:

  • Your firm name
  • Industry
  • Preferred colour and design for a logo
  • Anything you might already know
  • The character of your brand

Once the competition begins, all designers will use this brief as their guide. Your results will be better if you describe your vision in more depth. Some platforms allow you to enter your preferences into a text box, while others employ sliders and web forms.

2 – Acquire Concepts

After launch, designers are permitted entry. Most websites promise about 100 participants, but this number can vary greatly. You can decide whether your competition will be blind or open to the public; if you go with the latter option, participants will frequently develop their ideas following the competition's general guidelines after seeing one other's work. It's normal not to see many designs immediately because many designers wait until the last few days to submit their work.

3 – Select and Modify

Finally, you select the design you want and work to refine it. Depending on the platform, you either highlight items you like or remove options you don't want. Before making your final choice, you can offer feedback and ask for revisions. Once satisfied, approve the choice to obtain copies of the logo and all design rights.

The top logo design services offer additional features depending on the company you pick to host the competition, even though these three processes are standard in all logo design competitions.

The 3 Industry Best Logo Contest Sites

While we're at it, let's take a quick look at some of the best logo contest sites. Industry leaders in crowdsourcing logos include the following:

1 – HiretheWorld

Two Vancouver-based Canadian brothers founded HiretheWorld as a general outsourcing platform that later specialised in graphic design. To protect you from being duped, they provide a thorough overview of all of their designers, along with individual profiles and ratings. The service additionally randomly captures screenshots while it is operating; this not only ensures that they are operating but also enables you to watch the process as it unfolds.

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2 – DesignCrowd

Another well-known logo crowdsourcing competition is DesignCrowd. It allows you to declare your budget in brief rather than providing predefined price plans, which is great for saving money. The platform also recognises that choosing a logo might be difficult. Therefore it enables you to exchange designs with your friends and coworkers instantly.

3 – The Logo Co

The Logo Co. modifies the notion of a logo design competition. Instead of inviting all designers to participate, the platform selects five for you to collaborate with specifically. This benefit is that you can work together more closely, leading to fewer design options.

Pros And Cons of Logo Design Competitions

Logo Design Competition Plagiarised Logos

Are you looking for a quick fix for your brand logo? Then, a logo design contest is your best bet. Competitors come from all over the world to submit their designs. This is an excellent method to receive a wide selection of styles at a low cost.

Designers are motivated to give their absolute best work because of the intense level of competition they face.

Logo design contests are preferable to employing a logo designer for several reasons, including that they are the quickest method for producing the logo.

  • Wide Selection of Styles

One great thing about these competitions is the variety of opportunities they present. Different ideas and layouts have been proposed.

When exposed to so many original ideas, your typical thought process transforms. When you have private designers work for your business, you restrict the range of possible approaches and ideas.

  • Most straightforward and Most Economical Approach

Getting a logo designed by a private designer might be costly due to their set rates.

On the other hand, logo design contests are cost-effective and may be used for any logo, regardless of the need.

  • More Visibility

Participating in a logo design contest is a terrific way to get your business noticed and attract more customers. Gaining visibility benefits your business since it increases your chances of connecting with prospective designers and customers.

All arguments have two sides. Likewise, a logo competition featuring a darker tone can be seen here.

  • Possible Dangers to Your Business

You can take a considerable risk for your business at a low expense. Avoid taking chances with your logo because it will represent your firm for many years.

  • Probably Best Ignored

As a result of voting for the logo that receives the most votes, even the most pleasing design may not be chosen. Once you've held a logo contest, you're stuck picking a winner from among the submitted logos. You can't play dirty if you want to maintain a good reputation for your business.

  • Plagiarism

Jeff Fisher, a talented and popular identity designer at Jeff Fisher Motives, shares his views on the logo design competition and says,

“Most of the time, my original designs are easily found as a logo design contest ‘entry' on different websites claiming to offer their ‘clients' a vast array of aesthetically appealing and quality logo submissions. About last week, in a matter of a few hours, I found more than four designers submitting rip-offs of my original designs on two different contest sites.

When crowdsourcing, there are many stories of plagiarism. They make some slight alterations and present it as if the whole concept was theirs. In recent times, I have also discovered a few logos created by some so-called professional designers, which often vary from clip arts, images, logo animations and recycled again.”

To get ahead in a competition, some designers steal the ideas of others. You could be inviting legal trouble upon yourself if you choose that logo design for your business that others have used.

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Reasons Why You Should Not Opt for Logo Design Contest If You're Looking for a Quality and Authentic Brand Logo

Cheap Logo Design Services

The essential purpose of a brand logo is to showcase your authenticity. It should represent you as a responsible and professional business so that more and more people are attracted to it.

Suppose you're serious about building an excellent reputation as a brand. In that case, logo design competitions are a waste of time as you can't expect professional results for such sites and contests. It may sound like a great idea, but only if you search for a quick logo design in your blog‘s header. Otherwise, it's a big no.

Let us elaborate on why.

1 – Not So Great Reputation

Since no one in a crowdsourcing design project gets paid except the “winner,” many individuals view it as a means to gain free or inexpensive labour.

While it may not be considered exploitation in some industries, 99 per cent of participants receive no compensation for their efforts is a red flag in others.

Thus, it will identify your company as exploiting talented but financially insecure designers if you have a logo design competition.

Could this be the impression you want consumers to have of your company? From a buyer's perspective, it's reasonable to assume that a company that is hesitant to pay a designer a fair wage will also skimp elsewhere in the production process.

I want to say that if you don't respect your brand, then you can't expect customers to respect you. Such events can be devastating for businesses of any size.

2 – Subpar Performance

When a business decides to hold a logo design contest, everyone involved has high hopes for the number and quality of submissions they will receive. This is, without a doubt, the ideal way to launch their brands into the market. The truth is far from that.

First of all, not everyone who enters is going to have any design background. Some will be young people trying to earn some spending money, some will be self-described “amateur designers” (which is OK; everyone has to start somewhere), and still others will be taking a chance on luck.

The presence of copycat designs is a given, along with low-quality work. Regrettably, plagiarism is commonplace in contests of this nature.

Standard practice involves:

  • Searching Google Images for an appropriate logo.
  • Erasing the original company name.
  • Tracing the logo.
  • Distorting and recolouring it so that the original is unrecognisable.
  • Hoping that nobody notices.

Some of these con artists are pretty skilled, and if you're not careful, you could run afoul of copyright regulations.

It's essential to exercise extreme caution because contest participants hide behind their usernames, and there are no binding agreements in place.

Picture yourself receiving what you believe to be a fantastic logo design concept, only to learn that it is a complete copy. The potential of legal action makes it clear that you must avoid using the disputed mark.

This whole competition is starting to look like a waste of time. Wouldn't you spend that time working one-on-one with a professional instead of filling out and developing your logo over weeks or months?

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Plagiarism is not even a remote possibility; having observed several logo design competitions over the years, I can confidently say that it is present in every single one.

3 – Challenges in Project Management

Also, one potential snag in a logo contest is overseeing a large group of creative individuals.

You may have to communicate with hundreds of people worldwide, many of whom may not speak your language if the project becomes popular (a more significant prize will attract more competitors).

Although it may appear that you are saving money by not employing a professional designer, you will squander a great deal of time and energy. There is no way this won't hurt your company.

Finally, consider that you will have very little input from the designer. Refining a rough idea into something you can enjoy will be time-consuming and discouraging.

Who Should Opt For A Logo Design Competition?

Copied Logo Design Competition

Several logo design approaches are available, so selecting one that suits a company's needs and budget is simple. The design competition is an excellent combination of the human designer and automated online tools. Since they offer decent quality at reasonable prices, they are ideal for start-ups of all sizes.

Logo design contests are also a great option if you're still in the development phase and want to do A/B tests on aspects of branding. Due to the inexpensive cost, you can afford to develop multiple concepts at once, and the wide variety of designs will offer you a complete picture of what your firm could look like.

Competing in a design contest is an excellent way for a lone proprietor like a blogger to gain experience and exposure. You get the advantages of collaborating with real, live expert designers without paying their rates.

Professional Logo Design Company 101:

“A creative and successful design work only results from a collaborative work process between a professional designer/company and the clients. It helps better understand the client's objectives, requirements, and competition.”

-Richard Grefe

The Executive Director of AIGA

Determining whether to hold a logo design contest or hire a professional logo design firm might be challenging. Still, things can be simplified by first weighing the benefits and drawbacks of hiring a professional to create a logo for you.

Advantages Of Hiring A Professional Logo Design Company

Custom Logo Design Services From A Logos Designer
  • Expanded Adaptability

When you outsource the process of making a logo for your company, you have a lot more leeway in terms of how large a team works on the design. You may keep the project's price tag down by scaling back and avoiding going overboard. If you're making a logo in-house, you can't reduce the size of it.

  • Increased Variety

With the help of a reliable outsourcing service, you can choose a design firm with the expertise your team lacks. If you're looking for a designer to outsource to, you may narrow your search to find people who have experience with the kinds of material you're making.

  • More New And Original Thoughts

Outsourcing is an excellent option if you're looking to shake things up and test out some novel approaches to design. You'll expose your business to new ideas and approaches by bringing in an outside logo designer.

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Disadvantages Of Hiring A Professional Logo Design Company

  • Multiple Projects At Once

This is a significant drawback of relying on third parties for logo creation. Designers may be juggling multiple projects at once, including yours. Because of this, you shouldn't expect them to devote as much time to your logo as an in-house designer would.

Typically, the designers working on your logo design will have to split their focus. Having to spend extra time and money on fixing designs that don't turn out as expected is possible. There may be problems and delays with the project if you have a short deadline and a limited budget.

When outsourcing, it's essential to work with a firm with proven experience and can reliably meet your deadlines.

Prior customers of the logo design firm might provide valuable insight into the quality of the company's work.

  • Neglect of Duty

When you hire someone else to create your logo, you lose creative control over the process. Requesting alterations and modifications do not give you any automatic right to make them; the designer has the final say over what needs a change. While you can dictate the pace of an in-house designer to ensure that project deadlines don't extend, this is not an option when working with a third party.

When outsourcing, it's not just the logo design that needs regular attention. Concerns may arise, including the law, money, and personnel selection in the event of an expansion. Someone else in your firm probably handles these.

Why Should You Outsource A Professional Logo Design Company For Your Brand Logo?

A business may hire one of the best logo design firms for various reasons.

  • Reduce spending on specific endeavours or aspects thereof.
  • Avoiding overloading in-house designers with responsibilities is essential, so learning to delegate is critical.
  • Allow additional time and energy on other matters within the organisation.
  • To bring in outside designers who possess expertise currently lacking in-house.

Final Verdict

To sum it up, both options have advantages and disadvantages. It's basically in your hand to consider all the factors before choosing for yourself or your brand.

Personally, I think the best choice for any company, no matter the size or industry or anything, is to outsource their logo from a professional company. Not only will it help save some $$$ and provide flexibility. But also breathe life and add a touch of creativity to your organisation's brand identity.

Or you can inspire your brand to move with a logo animation, which will be only possible when outsourcing.

This will give you a golden opportunity to connect and hire the best logo designing company.

Beforehand, do your homework. Research the company, and look for honest customer reviews, portfolios, and testimonials to see if you're making the right choice. Additionally, discuss your budget and requirements briefly when collaborating with any company.

Author Bio: Adil Memon is a world-renowned blogger and entrepreneur with a great experience in the online marketing space. Adil always strives to create compelling copy informing readers about the latest trends. You can find more about his work on Linkedin.

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Stuart Crawford

Stuart Crawford is an award-winning creative director and brand strategist with over 15 years of experience building memorable and influential brands. As Creative Director at Inkbot Design, a leading branding agency, Stuart oversees all creative projects and ensures each client receives a customised brand strategy and visual identity.

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