What words come to mind when you think of Coca-Cola? What about Pepsi? If Starbucks had a theme song, what would it sound like? Can you hear it in your head right now?
Okay what about this: if Apple was a Spice Girl, which would it be? Or, if Nike was a gif, would it be something like this?
Or like this?
These questions may seem subjective, yet we can probably all agree that Nike is more like the first gif than the second, that Starbucks’s theme song would be an acoustic ballad and not dubstep, and that if Apple was a Spice Girl, it would unequivocally be Posh.
These companies have all managed to create strong, distinct personalities. That is: they are masters of branding. Your company’s branding is what communicates its personality, its aesthetic, its essence. And it’s crucial to your business’s success!
Branding encompasses everything from your business’s logo design to its brand style guide to its packaging and more. Every detail of your branding, from the typography you choose to the photos you use, should work together to tell a cohesive story.
Basically, great branding is difficult and also super important, so you’ll probably want to hire an expert to help you get it right. But how much do a logo and branding cost? Let’s break it down.
How much does a logo cost?
Average Cost of Logo Design in 2020-2021: $2,500–$8,000
Your logo is one of the most important parts of your branding and digital marketing budget. It’s often the first thing your audience sees, and this may surprise you, but sometimes people can be…kind of judgey.
That’s why it’s important to invest in a quality logo, which can cost anywhere from $2,500 to $8,000. If that seems pricey, remember: you only get one chance to make a good first impression. So, what exactly does that $2,500 to $8,000 get you? Let’s take a closer look.
What You Get for Your Money
- All .png files—a few variations of your logo, some opaque and some on transparent backgrounds, so that the logo can easily be adapted to fit different mediums.
- A color palette—a custom set of colors that will keep your marketing materials looking uniform
- Typography—a chosen set of complementary fonts
- Mood board—a collage of images to serve as inspiration for how you want your brand to feel
- Design elements—individual shapes or textures that coordinate with your logo
- Brand Book (brand guidelines)—a guide for incorporating things like the logo, typography, and other design elements into your marketing materials
- Copyright—protection so that no one else can use your unique logo
- Working files—the original Adobe Illustrator files for your logo (can cost an additional $500 to $3,000)
The price of the logo typically includes all of these elements, plus a few iterations of the logo concepts, and several rounds of edits as you work with the designers to tweak your logo to perfection. Your logo, typography, and color palette are the foundation of anything visual you produce, so trust us, the price is well worth it. Stick with the professionals—this is not the time to DIY.
How much does branding cost?
A logo is one component of your business’s branding. However, branding is more than a logo; it includes everything from your style guide to your packaging design and everything in between. Branding is all about the big picture, tying everything together to make sure you are always staying “on brand.” So how much is good branding worth?
Editorial Style Guide: $1,400–$4,000
The Editorial Style Guide sets the tone for all your written content. Whether you’re writing an email newsletter or a tweet, you’ll need to first consult your style guide to ensure each of your 280 characters follow the established rules for your company. Sure, it might seem fun to start a Twitter war with Wendy’s, but is roasting a popular fast-food chain really the right look for your, say, ethically-produced maternity clothing brand? Probably not.
You need to hone a consistent voice that your audience will recognize. That’s why the style guide is so important. It establishes your mission, vision, voice, and tone for every marketing channel and situation.
You can expect to pay $1,400 to $4,000 for this must-have branding tool. From your company’s social media attitude to your stance on using the oxford comma, your editorial style guide is your marketing communications Bible, so this isn’t a component to scrimp on.
Brand Identity and Brand Name Development / $1,000 and up
Sometimes entrepreneurs and business owners need help with the aesthetics and the overall business development. If you need help coming up with a memorable and relevant name for your business, marketing agencies can help. Depending on how many rounds you go and when during the process you hire help, pricing will vary. However, you can roughly plan on this taking a professional about 5–10 hours to do correctly—so you’re left with a brand name you absolutely love.
Tagline / $500 and up
Need a catchy tagline to go along with your brand guidelines? No problem! You should budget at least $500 for this service as it should take a professional copywriter three to ten hours to accomplish this task. This should include several rounds of revisions and at least 20–50 tagline options. Make sure you get a deliverables list before you kick off a tagline project so you get exactly what you pay for!
Jingle or Promo Reel / $2,000 and up
Promo reels are a fantastic investment if you plan on producing a lot of video content—which these days you should absolutely do. Generating one of these isn’t cheap, but it will have a long lifespan.
Packaging Design / $1,000 and up
Packaging serves multiple functions. Not only does it protect your product, but it’s also a crucial part of marketing, so you’ll want to dress to impress!
Packaging design typically starts at $1,000. Depending on how many different elements you need to be designed to the complexity of each, budget can vary pretty drastically. Here’s a tip: the more experienced the designer or marketing agency, the better. It may be tempting to cut corners on your packaging design costs but be warned, the results may not be what you expected.
Market Research and Business Consulting / $100–$300 per hour
Hiring a marketing consultant, business consultant, or SEO specialist to conduct market research team may seem like a luxury, but the information these services provide is priceless. For anywhere from $100 to $300 per hour, you gain access to things like competitor analysis or focus groups, which can give you invaluable insights about your customers or your rivals.
It’s always smarter to invest in a sound strategy before jumping into aesthetics, so you can fully nail down your demographic, business goals, and mission. These insights often translate to more sales for your business, meaning that this service essentially pays for itself!
So… how much does logo and branding cost?
All in all, you can expect to pay anywhere from $2,500 to $15,000 on average for full branding and logo design. The higher-end, of course, including all the bells and whistles.
How to find a logo designer or branding agency
There may be times when you already have an internal employee you can hire for this type of work. Or, a cousin’s roommate who is a supposed designer and really reasonable for logo and branding cost. However, if you don’t already have a branding superstar on your staff, or you have more work than your own employee can handle, you’ll want to find a branding agency or freelancer. Freelancers can be found and vetted on sites like Upwork, but make sure you choose someone who is experienced and has a robust portfolio of relevant work.
If you’re looking at branding agencies, you can narrow down the list by looking for agencies that specialize in your niche. For example, if you are a sustainable, woman-owned business, or health and wellness brand…we know an agency that would be perfect for the job. Charm School 🙂
So, now you ought to have a better idea of what your logo and branding cost ought to be. Where do you go from here? Well, now is the time to ask yourself what would your company’s theme song sound like? Which gif is the perfect embodiment of your business? Which Spice Girl would you be? Once you have your vision and overall vibe, you are ready to find the perfect designer or marketing and branding agency to bring it to life. The logo and branding cost is entirely up to your budget, and any reputable agency should be able to work with that to help you achieve your business goals.