logo + flyers
Melissa loves dogs – training them is her passion. Her methods are modern and reward-based, eliciting the desired behavior through praise, playtime, treats, and other positive reinforcement.
Having worked at other animal practices for a few years, Melissa decided to branch out on her own, and in 2013 we got to work on a logo for her first training facility. Here are the instructions we received:
I haven’t really come up with anything quite in mind yet – I know a lot of pet industry logos have cartoon dogs and bones and I would like to stay away from this if possible. My training is all about positive techniques – maybe a leash and paws?
I really want it to be something that will catch every pet lovers attention but I don’t want it to be cartoony and cheesy. Does that make sense?
Colors: Fun blue/pink?
What’s obvious to the business owner isn’t necessarily obvious to an industry outsider. As we learned, there are two main camps when it comes to dog training; one advocates the use of rewards to motivate the dog, and the other uses punishment to correct behavior. Not surprisingly, dog owners fall firmly into one or the other, and the logo must make it clear which training approach is used.
For example, if Melissa’s logo give the impression that she trains guard dogs, potential customers will assume it’s through punishment-based training and look for another trainer, losing her that business. Meanwhile, those looking to train a guard dog would contact her because of her logo, but would also move on to another trainer once they learn about her reward-based approach.
Your logo is a selling tool, and it must clearly communicate the right things to your target audience.
Here are three concepts we created. They give off a fun vibe, and communicate playfulness without being too cartoony or cheesy:
I think we’re on the right track for the designs. I like the 3rd one the best – I was wondering if we could change up the font a little, make it maybe not as sharp looking? but not as bubbly as the 2nd design. Does that make sense lol?
I love the colour so I wouldn’t change anything that way – I’m not a huge fan of the dog – maybe could we put a different dog like a retriever or something??
One thing I was thinking too, was maybe with the dog if we can incorporate training into it somehow? Not sure how we would do it but just a thought.
For the most part, this feedback was excellent – we had clear instructions for what to keep and what to change, but the additional training element had us a bit uneasy. The previous iteration of the logo already had strong imagery – with the dog chasing the ball. Adding another element, like a barrier, a whistle, or a newspaper, etc. would make the logo too busy.
Our clients often ask us to add additional symbolism to their logos, but more often than not it weakens the logo. It’s important to know when to stop, lest the logo lose its impact. That’s what we advised Melissa – with the text, whistle, dog, ball, it would be too much, and we really didn’t want to split the focus and message of the logo.
We began by presenting two variations, changing the font and dog:
And, we would have added a training element in the next revision round had Melissa still wanted to see it. As it happened she absolutely loved the first of the revisions and with that we had a winning design.
Melissa wanted a variation with a tagline, so with the next revisions we presented a few different options.
We then created a few different positions with the dog and ball for her website and social media, and a couple flyers for her new puppy training classes.