The 5 Big Mistakes IFAs Make In Financial Logo Design

Man stepping on banana, illustrating mistakes with financial logo design

09 Mar The 5 Big Mistakes IFAs Make In Financial Logo Design

A financial logo is a crucial part of your brand. It provides the visual focal point of your company’s identity, allowing your audience and clients to quickly recognise you and remember you.

A great logo design, therefore, is an indispensable asset to preserve and uphold your firm’s reputation. A poor quality financial logo, on the other hand, will hurt your marketing (due to a lack of memorability) and undermine trust (due to a perception of low quality).

Designing a great financial logo is no easy feat. It’s tempting to turn to cheap options for a design, such as “auction style” freelancer sites. After all, it’s just a simple graphic isn’t it? How hard can it be?

Well, pretty flipping hard! Even the top logo designers specialising in financial services find it a challenge (it’s one of the things that makes it rewarding for us). There are so many cliches in the financial sector that a good logo designer will have their work cut out for them, to create something truly high quality and unique for their client.

Unfortunately, not every logo design agency is actually avoiding the common pitfalls in the financial services sector. It’s easy to fall into them, and in this article we’re going to share 5 with you. That way, you can be aware of them when it comes to your own financial logo design project.


#1 Inappropriate Typefaces

If you have Microsoft Word, open the programme and glance through the list of possible fonts you can use. This is just a tiny selection of a much wider range of typefaces available to writers, designers and content creators. Each one has its own distinct “flavour” or “personality”. And just like human personalities, some fonts can offend and others can delight.

Some human personalities are quirky, or strange. Others are exotic, and unusual. Then there are those who are reserved, or serious. Much of these character perceptions come across in the way people talk, look and present themselves. Fonts act in a similar way when it comes to financial logo design. You want a font which actually reflects your personality in a clear, memorable and authentic way.

The problem comes when financial logo designers create a logo for a client which does not ring true of their brand character. Or, it possibly comes across as amateur, or unprofessional. Others look too cold, or overbearing.

Choosing the right font for your logo is a real challenge, and requires careful thought and creative exploration to get it right. No shortcuts can be afforded here. Give you financial logo designer the budget and range they need to give your business what it deserves in this respect.


#2 Terrible Choice of Colours

Similar to typeface, colour is another important aspect of mood creation and personality depiction. Think about the green witch in the musical “Wicked”, for instance. The green makeup the lead actor uses is sickly, yet somewhat comical – a good encapsulation of what her character is about!

Colours have an important psychology behind them which must be taken into account in any financial logo design. In Western cultures, for instance, blue is perceived as cool and professional whilst red is seen as passionate and sporty.

These connotations are not set in stone, as they are affected by our subjective opinions as well as the other styles and visual components of the brand, which set the corporate colours in context.

Here, logo designers can often go astray. It’s easy to focus on colour a the beginning of a logo design project, but this really should come after the designer is confident of the brand’s core values and message. The essential look and structure of the logo therefore needs to be established early on without having to rely on colour. In other words, if the logo can’t work effectively in black an white or gray-scale, then it probably needs another look.


#3 Complexity In Design

Logo designers and their clients can easily become distracted by intricate, complex designs which actually fail to be effective. Simplicity really is key in financial logo design, as this aids memorability for your target audience and allows greater flexibility for your logo to be used in different sizes, and in different brand collateral and communications (e.g. an email signature, a social media profile etc.).

Logo designers should avoid using too many colours in their creations. Of course, some brands like Google have managed to get away with their rainbow coloured design. But in general, the best brands tend to keep colour and logo design fairly simple.


#4 Incorrect Image Graphics

This is more of a technical error made by logo designers. However, it is still important to be aware of and avoid. Raster images are those which rely on pixels to depict their content, and the result is distortion if you try to re-size them.

A logo that comprises a raster image – or set of them – will therefore encounter problems when you try and put it on different platforms, backgrounds and communication materials. It might look good on your website favicon, for instance, but it will likely be a blurry mess on your Twitter background image.

An astute financial logo designer will therefore design your logo in vector graphics, to ensure your images can be enlarged or shrunk without distortion.


#5 Being Overly-Influenced By Design Trends

Logo design, like the fashion industry, usually finds itself dominated by a particular design style or trend. This look or approach will pervade for a while, but after a short time will disappear and be replaced by another trend.

The unfortunate consequence is, for those who invested a financial logo design in one of these trends, they quick look out of date. As a result, it isn’t long before a new design is required, meaning more money is spent and your target market have to familiarise themselves with your new logo.

A good financial logo, therefore, will not totally ignore the trends but will at the same time seek to be timeless. There are some great logos in the world, like Coca Cola, which have altered slightly over the decades but their fundamental design and identity has remained the same. That’s because there are certain designs which just work over a longer time span, and a great financial logo designer will help you identify such an approach for your project.