Mastering how to present a logo to clients can take years of practice and experience.
Plus, there’s the pressure of getting a client logo presentation right the first time in order to avoid starting over or frustrating your client.
While a logo technically should stand on its own, my friend and logo expert Ian Paget perhaps put it best:
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“I’ve learned through experience that how you present your design work is as important, if not more, than the physical design phase.”
With that in mind, I reached out to Ian, who runs a wonderfully successful logo design company in the UK and asked for a favor.
Could he connect me with dozens of talented logo designers to answer the question of how to present a logo to a client successfully?
What I got back was a collection of incredible advice from experienced logo designers who have been designing logos and presenting them to clients for years.
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That means, instead of slogging through learning how to present a logo from scratch, you can learn from some talented and experienced logo designers exactly how to present a logo for the highest chances of client satisfaction.
Below are some of the most helpful responses I received. I hope they’ll prove useful as you perfect how to present a logo to your own clients.
1. Start with the logo design brief
The success of your logo presentation to a client starts long before you sit down to present your logo.
The real secret of how to present a logo begins in your initial meetings with clients when you agree on a creative brief.
Then, presenting a logo to a client becomes a matter of showing them how your design fulfills the requirements you both agreed on earlier in the process.
Here’s what a few expert logo designers had to say about how to present a logo according to the design brief:
Always start with a detailed design brief. If the client doesn’t provide you with one, create your own by asking the right questions. Once you have created a brief, get the client to approve this before starting anything.
As part of my logo design process I create a tick-list of objectives by asking questions. I then ask the client to check and approve this list.
This approach ensures that we’re both on the same page from the outset, and that I have goals to refer back to when presenting my work.
—Ian Paget, LogoGeek
Before presenting I start with a conversation. I tell them what they are going to see, and how I will explain the reasons behind the work. I talk about research and reiterate what the creative brief outlines.
—Susan Feinberg, Fireside
Take them through the logo design process and show them how your concept meets their criteria.
—Col Gray, PixelsInk
Refer back to the brief to show your understanding of their brand and requirements.
Start with the end in mind – the goal – then repeat the brief, linking to aspirations they have for their company/brand. Then take them through what you will be presenting and your thought process for each.
—Danny Matthews, Danny & Co.
The most important thing is that the client can see how the solution delivers the strategy.
2. Make the logo presentation in-person or via video
Another suggestion on how to present a logo that came up over and over again in our group of experts was to make your logo presentations to clients in-person (or online), not via email.
Part of mastering how to present a logo is being able to gauge client reactions on the fly and adapt to a wide variety of responses. This proves near impossible when you simply present a logo via email.
Taking time to prepare a presentation that you make “in person” also shows you care about how you present the logo and that you believe in your final logo design.
Here’s what a few of our expert logo designers had to say about how to present a logo in-person (or via video):
My best advice is to always present [the logo] face to face. Never just send a file… It’s a simple one but also one of the most important things, in my opinion.
—Mads Haakansson, N’fellows
Have structure to the presentation and always do it in person/live, instead of email.
If you’re presenting the logos over skype or Zoom, do not send the presentation document to the client ahead of the call, instead present the logos document to them page by page and talk them through what they are seeing.
—Ben Stanbury – Prosper
3. Tell a compelling story about the logo
Learning how to present a logo to a client is as much about storytelling as it is about professional presenting skills.
In fact, a story will often get you much further with a client than a stiff, executive-style presentation ever will.
Your story should present the problem the company or its customers have faced and how the new logo solves many previous issues.
Here’s what some of our experts had to say when it comes to using storytelling when presenting a logo:
Tell the story behind the logo and it’s meaning. Touch on how it meets their criteria and how you see it resonating with the target market. Make sure to summarize that story as a simple blurb in the presentation, so the client can reference it as they deliberate.
—Rachel Stoneking, Stoneking Design
Take them on a journey. Tell a meaningful story both visually and in writing.
— Craig Burton
Make a little animation or GIF to explain the story of the logo. This makes your client’s life easier as they explain further to all other stakeholders.
Tell their story. Show how you’ve listened and interpreted their core. Show them that you understand and share their vision and goals. The craft and implementation can come later in the presentation but they need to believe you’ve ‘got it’.
— Jonathan Harris, Harrisment
4. Include mockups & provide context
In addition to telling a story and showing how your logo solves the client’s problem-at-hand, you’ll also want to learn how to present a logo in context by providing real-life scenarios and mock-ups.
By presenting a client’s logo in real-world settings (like on their products, on business stationary, or in advertisements), your client will be more likely to envision the strength of the new logo you’re presenting.
Here’s what logo presentation pros told me about harnessing the power of logo mockups:
Include mockups to show the logo in use in real world situations and not just on an empty white page. Many people need help with visualising their logo in use and it really helps to sell the design.
— Col Gray
Give the logos some context. Whether that’s on the back of a business card, or the side of a building. It will help them understand how their new brand is going to work in the real world.
— Simon Potter, Pixels & Paper
Show them how the logo will be used in real life and suggest an application they may not have thought of relating to their aspirations. So if they would love to bring out a new product in future – show how that would look in real life to give longevity to the designs.
Showcase the logos on mockups! Be sure to use the typical business stationery mockups, but also include a few that are relevant to the clients and their industry. Mockups are a great way to show clients how their new logo will work in the real world.
Choose some selected key visuals/mockups of their identity in action. Get them to buy into themselves and their audience using and experiencing the new scheme.
You have to present [the logo] in context, and build on a story that the client will embrace. All of this stems from understanding the business, the culture, and the brand to help establish the right design for the right narrative.
5. Show off the logo’s versatility
In addition to presenting mockups of the logo’s potential usage, it will be helpful to show how versatile your logo can be.
Learning how to present a logo in a wide variety of ways will help your client see how flexible and timeless your new design is. It will help them see exactly why you charge good money for logo design.
Here’s what some of our logo design pros said about versatility:
Present it in as many ways as you can. Show it big, small, white only, black only. Show it embroidered, screen printed, embossed, glossy, matte. Show it on a mug, a hat, a t-shirt, on paper, on a car, on a billboard, in a newspaper… you get the idea.
The point is to show them the versatility of the logo. Show that you’ve put in enough thought on the design that no matter the situation your design is going to work for them and not be something they need to “find a solution for” down the road.
Don’t just show it large, show it tiny too. Large is impactful, but small shows it has range. There’s no point progressing a design that doesn’t work at 100px wide.
—Mark Bowley, Bowley Design
6. Focus on the audience
Throughout your entire logo design presentation, you want to focus on the logo’s audience.
The audience is often not the client you’re presenting the logo to, but their customers or clients. So while it may be tempting to talk about how much your client should like your new logo designs, learning how to present a logo with the right audience in mind is critical to your success.
Perhaps one of the most critical pieces of advice was given by logo designer Ben Mottershead from Ben Designs: “Always show the logo as it would be seen by an audience.”
That means as you’re presenting mockups or highlighting the versatility of your new logo design, make sure you highlight the new logo from the perspective of the most important audience: your client’s customer.
You may find you need to remind your client to judge the new concept based on the audience, as I was reminded by designer Darius Enache: “Tell them on what criteria they should judge the logo (functionality, not personal preference).”
Show customers using products with the new logo. Show team vans parked on streets with the new logo plastered on the side. Mock-up a banner to see what the logo might look like at a major convention.
Putting the audience first through the entire process will be critical as you learn how to present a logo successfully.
Mastering how to present a logo
The truth is, you won’t be perfect at presenting logos to clients overnight. And that’s ok.
But with time, and using the advice of the expert logo designers above on how to present a logo, you’re way ahead of the competition.
In addition to the advice shared above, Steve Evans from Sed+Co urges, “Make sure you … tell them to sleep on the concepts. Far too often clients are too quick to pick an option. Once they’ve gained some distance from the initial excitement, they’re mind is clearer to make an informed ‘business minded’ decision.”
And, of course, perhaps the most important advice for anyone wanting to learn how to present a logo comes from designer Liam Jackson:
“Only present designs you’re happy with. (We all know why 😅 ).”
For anyone who doesn’t know (yet), there’s an unwritten law in logo design that the client will always, ALWAYS pick the design you like the least.
So when presenting logos to clients, never show them something you’re not happy with yourself.
With that, you’re ready to go. All of us wish you the best of luck on your next logo design presentation!
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