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Understanding Church Logo Design

When it comes to starting up a new ministry, there are certainly a number of hoops to jump through, but what the majority of communications directors and pastors alike struggle with the most is deciding on a church logo design that they feel best represents their church.

At Church Brand Guide, we want to make this process simpler for those out there who are currently experiencing this exact struggle. That’s why in this blog, we’ll be covering the branding knowledge that is key for ensuring you end up with an effective final logo design that serves as the foundation in which the rest of your church’s branding will be built upon.

Understanding Church Logo Design

The most important factor to remember for church logo design is that the perfect logo represents your vision.

The second most important concept to keep in mind is that confusion is the enemy of your vision.

In other words, your church logo design should not confuse your audience. It should not send mixed messages, and above all, it should be simple.

Understand The Types Of Logo Designs

Before we dive into main categories of logo designs that you can choose between when going about developing your church brand, it’s important to note that all logos are not images, but something else known as vectors.

What’s a vector? We hoped you might ask.

This is a technical term for graphic design which all logos consist of. It is a file made up of mathematical equations rather than pixels that allows a design to be scaled to any size without compromising the quality.

When going about creating a vector file for a logo design, the following are the five main categories that the majority of brands fall into:

Symbol (Icon)

This type of logo is the least revealing of all the logo types as it depends fully on a shape or symbol to represent the company. While these logos are hard to initially build a brand around, if successful, they really stick in the minds of your audience. For example, Shell’s logo might be hard to recognize as a shell if you had never heard of the company before, and it doesn’t necessarily tell you what the company does. But since the Shell logo has been seen at gas stations around the world for years, it is immediately associated with the company in people’s minds.

Word Mark (Font)

A word mark is simply the name of your church in a font that exemplifies the image, personality, and vision that you want to convey. While this puts a lot more pressure on choosing an ideal font, it also makes it easy for your audience to immediately identify who you are — that is, as long as you ensure that you choose a legible font. You can also choose to pair a word mark logo with a symbol for a more extensive brand scheme. For example, Facebook has used a word mark logo since its origination to help their grow their brand, but they also have now implemented an emblem that is used for their app and other features now that their brand is more easily recognized.  

Letter Mark (Initials)

Letter marks are a blend between a word mark and an icon as they are normally a shape that is meant to symbolize the organization, but they also feature an acronym for the church. This is a great option for many churches as it allows you to build recognition around a symbol while also featuring your church name subtly for easier brand recall. HP is a classic example of a simple yet effective logo that is also much more subtle and appealing than spelling out Hewlett Packard in a word mark.

Combination Mark

These are among the most common forms of church brands we see, featuring a vector design along with the name of the church. While these are effective in conveying a broader message to audiences who are just stumbling upon your church, they can be easy to overcomplicate. So if you choose a combination mark as your preferred church logo style, remember to keep it simple! Adidas is a great example of a brand that created a simple yet iconic logo symbol while also incorporating their word mark into their products and marketing materials.

Emblem

The last logo style that is certainly not the least is the emblem. An emblem logo features the full name of a company with the text wrapped into the design, which is normally of a crest-like nature. These logo designs are similar to combination marks as they are capable of encompassing more of your brand vision into one compact design, but they can also easily become overly complicated. Starbucks is a great example of an emblem logo design that borders the line of overly complex, but has been comprehensible enough to gain massive traction in terms of brand recognition.

Another important item to note is that most emblems will limit you to one final logo design, without the color variations that you are able to have created with other logo styles. So if you want one all-encompassing logo design that will be used universally, this is the style for you!

How To Choose a Church Logo Designer?

When it comes to selecting a graphic designer that you can trust to provide you with a quality logo and other branding essentials for your church, there are a few items to look for.

For starters, do they offer a design questionnaire? This is common practice among the creative industry that shows professionalism. It also is an essential tool for helping both the designer and you get a better idea of what type of final product you are wishing to receive. If you’d like to see what a standard questionnaire consists of, you can download our design questionnaire at Church Brand Guide here.

Another important question to ask a potential designer is what software will they be using for creating your logo files? In order to ensure that you receive true vector logo files as noted above, a graphic designer must create logos in Adobe Illustrator or similar software that supports this format.

Overall, it’s worth doing your research to find the best church branding company or logo designer — even paying a little extra if need be — in order to ensure you get the right logo the first time. This way, once you receive your final logo designs, you can quickly move on to the next steps in building your church’s brand and begin pushing your logo out to the world on all your other church marketing materials to begin building awareness.

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We hope that this information has been beneficial for you in preparing to take the next steps in your church branding by developing a brand new or reinvigorated logo design for your church. If you are ready to hire a designer to create your envisioned church logo, reach out to us! We’d love to help you with your church logo design or any other church marketing services you may need to grow your outreach.