Google changes their logo the way your doctor’s office changes the magazines in the waiting room. They’re different, but not really.
Here they are…in all of their primary color glory.
Logo design is truly an art. Taking a company, an idea, a concept, a passion and representing it with a single image is no small task. It requires a true understanding of what is at the heart of the organization and the skill to translate that into a universally recognizable image that will evoke emotion in everyone that sees it…..but not just any emotion……the right emotion!
Logo design does come down to just this: emotion. Your logo should grab people, excite them, welcome them, or ignite whichever feeling you desire. Some logos are meant to create excitement, others happiness, and some even want to evoke sadness. Whatever the goal, it is your designers responsibility to understand it well and keep it at the core of the design process. Here are some ways to make sure your logo has the desired impact…
The first step of evoking the right emotion in people is deciding what the right emotion is. When people see your logo do you want them to feel Excited? Happy? Cared For? It’s not enough to just say that your company represents all of these things – I’m sure it does! But what makes you stand out? What is different about you? Why should your potential customers choose you over your competitor? When you have that answer, THAT is the emotion you want to evoke.
Once you have determined what is the right emotion / feeling / reaction you want to convey through your logo, you can move on to actually creating it. This is where it gets fun. First, look for inspiration. This doesn’t mean copy someone else’s logo; it means look at other logos that make you feel the way you want your customers to feel and get some ideas of what they have in common. In general, laid back casual feelings will have more earthy tones & colors and softer, rounded edges (or no edges at all.) Exciting logos will create movement.
While logos that want to make people feel cared for and convey trustworthiness will often have strong larger than life representations
There is a phycology behind this that your designer should be aware of and capable of brining to your logo. What’s important here is that you have a frame of reference for what is relevant. The Starbucks logo wouldn’t work for a tech company (it’s too warm & welcoming) and the Apple logo won’t work for a coffee shop (not very warm & welcoming!)
Not at all. Of course logo design is artistic and there is no right or wrong, but this a very useful rule of thumb. Design your logo in black & white! If your logo can’t translate well to black and white, it will be very limited in its uses. This rule came about during the days of printed media, faxes, etc. when black print was the only option very often. While that’s not the case anymore, the rule still stands strong. A logo that can be represented by a single color (such as black) with negative space making up the rest (white) your logo will be endlessly versatile. Your designer should not need to rely on a huge color palette to create the desired effect.
This does not mean your logo cannot have color. Color is not a bad thing. But it should be able to easily translate into black and white. Be sure, however, that your colors are there for a purpose. Just because your logo includes a banana in it doesn’t mean the banana needs to be yellow. Just because there is a rose doesn’t mean it needs to be red. Logos are not literal representations, they are art. Use color for a purpose. Different colors convey different emotions. Red conveys the strongest emotions: Love, Passion & Anger. Green is calm and soothing. Blue is trusting and secure (it has a wide range depending on the shade.) The science of colors is a completely separate article in itself. The key here is don’t use color just to use color. Make it count.
Not so much. Again, this is of course a matter of opinion, but there’s good reason for our opinion – we promise! While the ability to create large, detailed images has become much easier in recent years through design software, the way in which we see these logos has actually gotten smaller. Logos are viewed on computers screens now – often as profile pictures on a social media page. Or a favicon (the small logo inside the address bar on your browser). These are TINY! And that’s on a computer screen. Now imagine all of this on a phone or tablet. Even tinier! The shape and outline of your logo should be recognizable even at these sizes. Keep the detail to a minimum. A single shape or silhouette can speak volumes!
A tree. No a tree with wires for roots. No, a tree with wires for roots and a single leaf falling off. No, a tree with wires for roots, a single leaf falling off, and a hand catching the leaf! Did any of those work? If not, read on…
We can’t just guess what should be included in your logo. It all comes down to everything you read above to decide what image(s) convey the right message. But what we can tell you is don’t be shy to think abstractly. Think of a creative way to represent the first letter of your company name. Think about what you really DO at your core.
So you’re a personal trainer. Yes, you train, you help clients build muscle, lose weight, etc. But what you DO is change lives. What you DO is teach people how to take care of themselves. What images convey those core aspects of what you bring to people?
You make gourmet food items. Yes, you cook. You bake. You mix. You package. We got it. But what you DO is give people food that they experience – not just eat. What you DO is take the ordinary (eggs, sugar, biscuits…) and make it extraordinary (Tiramisu)
So think hard about what you really do. How you impact people, animals, the environment, whatever and send that message. And very importantly, make sure you’re working with a designer that’s willing to take the time to figure out what you truly DO before creating a single sketch.
It’s a lot simpler than it sounds. It can get complex, and it can grow into something that completely drives your business or your website. But at it’s core, it’s pretty straight forward. Here’s the 5 minute explanation that nobody seems to want to reveal.
Using social media and blogs (which are a form of social media) are a way of driving people to your business or website. It’s that simple. Think of it like the postcards and other mailers you receive in your mail every day. Local realtors, gardeners, stores & small businesses send these things out constantly. Now, you’re not going to decide that you want to buy a house because you get an ad from a realtor, but when the time comes that you do want to buy a house, the first person that comes to mind to help you will be the realtor that you get all of those mailers from. And when you go to look for their information — there it is! In today’s mail again!
That’s what social media and blogging is all about. It’s a way for you to continuously put information and content out to people so that when the time comes that they need a service or product you can fill, you’re where they naturally turn.
Ultimately, you’re trying to keep people going to your website and keep your name on the top of their mind. You have to sort of work backwards here. Let’s start with a Facebook post or Tweet (Twitter.)
A business posts on Facebook: “Did you know you lose almost 100% of the value of installing a pool in your yard? But new windows keep almost all their value? Check out this post to read more about where your hard earned money is best spent on your home!”
You click on it, and it’s a link to a blog post on that person’s website talking about exactly what you expected. It’s not an advertisement or anything. Just good quality information that people want to read.
Why do they do this? It’s to build a ‘readership’. They want to create content (blog posts, Facebook & Twitter posts, etc.) that people want to read. And they want to do it consistently. If you pick up a magazine from a store a couple of times and love it every time, there’s a good chance you’re going to subscribe. Same idea here. If someone likes the content you’re producing over and over, they will become regular readers of your blog and possibly even subscribe to it (yes, that’s a thing!)
So now what do you have? You have a bunch of people constantly reading your blog, and very possibly, visiting your website to do that. 2 things come out of this:
And that’s how it all works.
So to get #1 above to start happening more, start with #6 an work your way up!
Using social media for your medical practice can be daunting and a little tricky to navigate. But it has becoming an absolute necessity to build a practice and is one of the most effective ways to gain a large and loyal base of patients and promote more word-of-mouth business. A survey by PricewaterhouseCoopers showed 41% of people are open to sharing their information with health care professionals via social media, and 61% said they trust information they receive via social media! And 70% said they would like to receive help from health care professionals via social media – including referrals! These numbers speak for themselves – and they are growing every day!
This has to come first. Not only is protecting your patients’ privacy the right thing to do, it’s the law. You can be very active & engaging with patients (and potential patients) on social media without having to even come close to any HIPAA concerns. As you start to grow your social media presence, people will post questions and concerns on your Facebook page, Twitter page, etc. and it’s up to you to address them appropriately. As a general rule of thumb, try to put these questions into one of three categories and address them accordingly:
Here’s the million dollar question…..what do I post??? Well, it’s easier than you think. You’re already in a unique position in which you hear from your customer base constantly about things they’d like to know more about and specific questions they have.
Always be on the lookout, every day, for a patient question that you think others might want to know more about. You of course don’t want to post about a specific patient or situation, but if you hear a question or concern that you don’t always have the time to expand on, a Facebook post (or blog post that you ‘share’ on Facebook) is a great place to expand on the topic. You can treat this the same way you’d write any other publication piece – general information & suggestions.
Listen for common misconceptions. You hear these all the time. Address them via social media. If you’re always hearing “Oh I always have a stomachache, it’s no big deal…” address that. You can’t diagnose it via social media, but you can absolutely let everyone know that something chronic like this may be a sign of something bigger and they should see their doctor. You can even make it fun & eye catching, like titling the post “Misconception of the week” or something like that. People love to stay informed and know a little more about a topic than the next person!
How-To posts are always a hit. These can be Facebook posts, quick Twitter posts, a full blog post, or even a YouTube video. The specific How-To you put together is of course dependent on your specific area of expertise. It might be a quick way to self-diagnose, a generally accepted & globally safe ‘relief’ (not cure) for some minor ailment, or even a how-to of how to get the most out of an appointment with their physician; what questions to ask, etc. This information is extremely valuable – especially when coming from an ‘insider’.
Social media is all about engaging your audience. Ask questions, solicit feedback and always encourage participation. You can have a ‘Q&A’ session via Twitter or Facebook (ask people to post question, then pick one to address.) Even better, make it a recurring event that people can count on — something like “Ask me anything Wednesday”. Ask people to share their experiences and things they found to be helpful. This will stimulate conversations that occur completely within your social media environment.
Also keep an eye out for recent medical news and publications that your audience might find interesting or helpful. You will often be aware of new developments sooner than your audience would be so share it. Let them become ‘in the know’ sooner than their friends. This is what is referred to as providing “social capital” and it’s what people are constantly looking for on social media.
Finally, if someone is particularly pleased with their experience with you, ask them to share it on your social media pages. You don’t need everyone to do it, but if you don’t ask, you can rest assured that no one will do it.
Not much to say here other than don’t be a flash in the pan. Don’t post twice a day for a couple of weeks then once a month after that. Establish a schedule you can stick with, and STICK WITH IT. Your audience likes consistency and reliability. You don’t need to post every single day (although that would be great) but you need to post regularly with fresh content, and you need to stay roughly within your schedule so your audience doesn’t forget about it. Be consistent. Oh – and be consistent. And final word of advice, be consistent.