LogoWorks, Get Your Own Logo Made on the Cheap

By way of disclosure, a good friend of mine, a venture capitalist, recently told me about one of the new companies that he had invested in, LogoWorks. The resulting post is a short review on the LogoWorks concept. I paid for the logos myself.

LogoWorks has kind of an interesting business model. They essentially match up free lance graphic artists and designers with companies looking to have logo’s created. This is probably something that would appeal more to small businesses than blogs but I thought the concept was pretty interesting.

So this morning I have a new logo up at the top of Thomas Hawk’s Digital Connection for my masthead. LogoWorks designed it. About a week ago I signed up for the service and this morning received a batch of logos to consider. The one on my masthead was the one I liked the best. I’m a little worried that it makes me appear a little too “corporate” for a personal weblog that doesn’t make any money, but I think it will grow on me.

The service works like this. You answer a brief questionnaire from LogoWorks about what kind of logo you are looking for. They in turn have a few different packages that you can choose from. They’ve got a $265 silver package (the one that I picked), a $385 gold package and a $549 platinum package. The different packages basically have to do with how many designs you will get back and how much revision you are allowed to do.

All of the interaction with the company is done via the internet. You submit your info to them, they return the logos back to you. You choose one and then can have the designer do additional work on it for you. If you don’t like any of the designs you have an easy out. After seeing the initial concepts, if you then decline any of them they give you your money back minus a $75 processing fee.

They have a gallery of some of their past logo work for you to review up at their website. So what else did they come up with for Thomas Hawk’s Digital Connection? See the images below. I’d be interested if you like any of them and if you think I picked the best of the bunch.


Thomas Hawk Logo Concept Number 1


Thomas Hawk Logo Concept Number 2


Thomas Hawk Logo Concept Number 3


Thomas Hawk Logo Concept Number 4


Thomas Hawk Logo Concept Number 5

So where does LogoWorks come up with these logos? We’ll they’ve networked with a group freelance designers that are looking for work. These freelance designers are in turn given projects from the LogoWorks submissions. From the money collected by LogoWorks (minus their profit of course), a payout pool is created, from this pool designers are paid. If a client chooses a particular design then this is taken into account for payout. Designs are also judged though by graphic artists themselves. Peers assign value to different designs and this is also taken into consideration for payout.

Forbes did a brief write up on the company a while back and explained why designers like it:

“Designers love it for the following reasons: They never have to meet with the clients; payment is immediate; they can work at home, day or night, with total flexibility; they can make $100 per design. That may be peanuts to a Madison Avenue pro, but not to a youngster making his or her mark. Logoworks has 10,000 customers and has been profitable since 2002.”

All in all I think LogoWorks is a pretty interesting concept. Especially with the plethora of small businesses starting up all the time I think that having a relatively inexpensive way to begin to create brand identity makes some sense. This is probably one more example of the internet being used as a mediator between two disparate groups, in this case small businesses and designers.

Although I’m worried that my own logo might look a little too “corporate” for me, I think the concept is interesting. And I certainly don’t think a “logo” makes a better blog for sure. Blogs are all about content, much less about image. You can have the slickest blog in the world from a design standpoint but at the end of the day it’s your writing that will build your audience. And of course some may say, “What? You spent WHAT on a frivolous logo? I can barely pay for hosting let alone have money to flit away on logos.” That’s why I think it’s probably a better service for small businesses than blogs. But I thought I’d spend the money to try the thing out and am reasonably happy with the job that they did.

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15 Comments

  1. http://www.designoutpost.com does the same kind of thing. It’s fascinating to see a bunch of different logos for the same company. Often people choose a logo that wouldn’t have been my choice that I don’t like, which is what makes this world an interesting place: variety!

  2. Anonymous says:

    I liked both 1 and 3 better than the one you picked. If you wanted to avoid the corporate look then #5 was kind of fun. I like the one you picked the least, but that is just one man’s opinion…

    Regardless of what one you use I think you should work on the banner. A little transparent version of the logo in the top left would appeal to me more. Blown up the way you have it it looks horribly jaggy.

  3. Dave2 says:

    For a while there, whenever I was swamped with work, I referred clients looking for a quick logo treatment to places like LogoWorks.

    Without fail, I ended up eventually redoing the logos once the clients realized that these places churn out thousands of similar-looking logos for thousands of people hoping to get a “hit.” Eventually I stopped recommending them because clients complained that they wanted a unique logo, rather than an iteration of what hundreds of others already have.

    So yes, it is an interesting idea, and I had high hopes for such places taking away some of my work-load, but I don’t think they will ever take the place of a one-to-one relationship between client and designer to get a truly strong and unique brand-logo.

  4. I agree with the above post. Companies like Logoworks will never replace a professional design service – not as long as their business practices encourage copyright theft.

    Several designs that they have sold to clients have been flat-out stolen from other designers without prior permission. There is a thread on the HOW forums about the subject.

    ( howdesign dot com > forums > lounge )

  5. Anonymous says:

    http://www.baddesignkills.com/logoworks/letter.html has some interesting things to say about Logo Works.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Not to say anything bad about Logoworks, but when a company gets that big and is working that fast, it seems like it could get difficult to control the quality of what they’re producing. I have no idea, I’ve never tried LogoWorks, but my wife recently got a logo designed by a company called LogoBee and she’s really happy with how it turned out. It seems like their prices are in the same ball park, but they have five-day turnaround and it’s a smaller company. Might be worth checking out, their site is http://www.logobee.com.

  7. Kevin Keys says:

    http://www.momentumdesignla.com
    Is all I have to say! I was a bit skeptical at first, but I was drawn to their site because of the fact that it didnt give me a headache to look at, there wasn’t a million packages to choose from and no lingo I didn’t understand. I called them up and got a quote that was very competitive with logo works. They designed something much nicer than I was hoping for, but when I said I was happy with it, they said that they were not! CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT!?! They said they were going to throw in a few more rounds of work on the house. It ended up being less expensive than logoworks because of the sheer amount of work they did. These guys really care about their work.

  8. Anonymous says:

    I recently had a logo completed for a lot less by a company that was voted best in test by wired magazine. The Logo Company http://www.thelogocompany.net

    I got 5 choices and they were all really great. Plus they don’t charge extra for revisions. They are all free no matter how many you have. On top of that they give you a COMPLETE refund if you are not happy. None of this $75 processing fee deducted rubbish.

    They also have a couple of thousand customer testimonials too and have done work for the likes of Duracell and MIT. Great case study section too.

    Seems there are better companies out there offering a better service for a much lower cost.

  9. Anonymous says:

    I have used their(logoworks) 399$ package and after working with them for the first few revisions, I have come to realize (to my experience) that they are overpriced, undercommunicative, (almost impersonal) and was agahast to see one of their first design concepts had >95% similarities to the ‘NetZero’ logo.
    If I have to be cheap the next time, I will go to someone who does the same work for a few hudreds less.

  10. Anonymous says:

    The big flaw with Logoworks is that the client never has any direct contact with the designers. Other than the online forms, the designers basically are shooting in the dark with minimal real time feedback from the clients. This is not how to produce quality work. If I did it again, I would work with an outfit that would let me get on the phone with the designers to express our needs.

  11. FinanceWonk says:

    I used their service and had a horrible experience. The logo was great and a good process, but I bought a package with other stuff too. They spent 3 months trying to wring more money out of me for corrections to their “mistakes” and then they provide files at the end which are only useful if you let logoworks do the printing. Read about my experience here: http://logoworkssucks.blogspot.com/

  12. Anonymous says:

    From an email I sent to LogoWorks this morning

    First of all, I have to say that I’m appalled at the way your company has handled my problems. Please note that while I am livid now, none of my communications were meant to be aggressive. You are invited to look at Kristin’s emails or I will forward all to you at your request.

    Ready? Here we go:

    This all started when I signed into my account (baker@oldcompany.com) to start a new project. The site told me I was missing some information – address, etc. When I tried to add the ‘missing’ information, the site advised that I couldn’t use the email address, because it was already being used by another account – mind you, I was already logged in.

    So, I logged out and created another account using sales@ oldcompany.com, still the same problem. At that point I called your office. Whomever I spoke with, for some reason changed the baker@ oldcompany.com to maker@ oldcompany.com and took the payment – confirmation is 111-111 and set the password. However, since there is no email address for maker@, I emailed to ask someone to change the maker@ back to baker@.

    The email I got back from Kristin was:

    Dear Ben,

    Thank you for your email. I am now showing that the email address for your account is baker@oldcompany.com. Please contact us if this is not correct.

    Thank you,
    Kristen
    Logoworks by HP

    Of course, I’m not Ben, which was clear in my email, but that can slide. So, I had to email her back:

    Kristin,

    What’s the password now? The password I was using with baker@ no longer works.

    Her response was:

    Dear [me!],

    The password has not changed. It is case sensitive, so please be sure the caps lock is not on. There is also a link that you can click on to email you a new password.

    Thank you,

    Kristen
    Project Manager

    Umm, the password for maker@ or baker@? I found this email to be offensive if not rude. Kristin made NO EFFORT to solve my problem – it’s abundantly obvious to me, she wanted to get this off her plate (be done with it) rather than be of service to me.

    So, I had to go the ‘lost password route’. BUT GUESS WHAT????? The new project wasn’t there! So again I email, asking for supervisor and/or an IT guy to get involved. Kristin’s response was:

    Dear [me!],

    We do not have record that you have started a new project for this account. The most recent project is for [some other company] which was finished in 2007. Please be sure to check and see if you signed up under a different email address. If you can provide a project number, I can also look that up.

    Thank you,

    Kristen
    Account Manager

    Ok, now your company is just looking stupid. So, again I emailed Kristin:

    Kristin,

    That’s exactly the point!

    The name of the company for the new project is [project name]

    I left off the ‘Etc’ but she was able to find it. She emailed back with:

    Dear [misspelling of my name],

    The project for [project name] is under this email address: sales@oldcompany.com. You can access it with this temporary password: nY8x6476474. Please be sure to complete the needed information and submit it so we can begin the project.

    Thank you,

    Kristen

    Nice name derivation! Loving it! However, when I log in there, I see that my billing information wasn’t accepted correctly so the project is a week old today, and no work has started.

  13. Anonymous says:

    I too used The logo company. http://thelogocompany.net Their system seems to be a lot more personal. They phoned me to go through the order and gave me a direct number to the project manager. That is pretty good for a company that designs logos for just $149.

  14. I hate logoworks says:

    logoworks.
    I was one of their clients, and they did a logo for me… one thing i can say – “Stay away from those people!” in my case all logos was terrible! they did 7 horrible logos, 6 of them was not even what i asked… than i choose one logo to revision, every revision takes 3-7 days and the most frustrating this- they didn’t do what i was asking!!! at each revision they add one little thing and let me wait for two months! at the end i downloaded photoshop and did it by myself.
    so if some one from logoworks are reading this – Fu*k you and go to hell!

  15. arthur says:

    I have used logoworks twice with great success. I have a review attached.