When a $79 Logo Gets Expensive
I was once asked by a potential client how I could charge what I do for a custom logo when there were places online charging $79 or less. I went into detail explaining how a logo is the foundation of a corporate image, how it must be unique, memorable, flexible for multiple uses and, above all else, reflect the identity and goals of what it represents. To do this right takes research, time, talent and experience. Most of these cheap online logo sites simply don't do much more than allow the buyer to buy a piece of clip art and add their company name from a selection of font choices.
Besides the obvious reasons why to not go cheap with something as important for a business as a logo, here's another — you might get sued.
i received an email from the AIGA (American Institute of Graphic Arts) today warning their members to visit LogoGarden.com to see if any of their logo designs have been "ripped off" and were being displayed on the site as original.
"Bill Gardner of Gardner Design, who found more than 200 of his own designs offered on the site, has documented Williams’s outrageous and unethical behavior on the blog Rock Paper Ink, including examples of the slight modifications of well-known logos like the identity for World Wildlife Fund and Time Warner Cable."
As you can imagine, Mr. Gardner is pretty upset and he, along with many other designers, are about to sue LogoGarden.com and owner John Williams. Here's a few of the many examples posted:
The top are logos designed by Gardner with the bottom ones available for purchase for $79 on LogoGarden.com.
Imagine being the unsuspecting owner of a business and getting your new logo from LogoGarden.com, feeling good about the money you saved, then getting a cease and desist letter informing you that use your new logo will result in a lawsuit. You'd be out only $79, right? Doubtful. If the owner had the logo printed on anything like brochures and business cards, signage, uniforms, etc., all of it would have to go into the nearest dumpster.
If this place is ripping off designers, you can bet many of those who submit logos in cheap spec "contests" and other logo design sites do as well. I just don't see why anyone takes the risk. Sometimes, nothing can replace a good filet.
Read Bill's article on Rock Paper Ink.