Thursday, September 22, 2005

The Real Cost of Logo Design

Sacramento State recently had their logo redesigned. They paid a design firm (Osaki Design) $34,000 to redesign the logo. This company did logos for the San Francisco 49ers and the Miami Dolphins.

Some students believed the graphic design department on campus should have designed the logo. They believed that they could have done a comparable logo for less money. But, according to the State Hornet Online News, the graphic design department disagrees:

"Without knowing all the details of the contract it is not possible to judge the cost of the redesign, but we stress that good design can cost large sums of money, since it requires many man-hours of research, design, review and study,” said Graphic Design Professor and Coordinator Gwen Amos on behalf of the department.

This brings up an interesting point. Is logo design simply the act of creating a mark? Or is it more than that? What justifies the cost of logo design? Is it the time spent creating a nice design, or is it the investment value that a good logo can bring to an organization? Maybe it is a bit of both.


  1. Anonymous6:08 PM

    In this case it was more about back door deals and buddies taking care of each other.

  2. I would be interested to know more details about this. Because if that is the case, that can be a reason for this decision. But it doen't make sense that an organization would spend more money than it would have to, unless the back door deals had some beneficial effect on them in return -- like kick-backs or conflict-of-interest issues.

  3. Hi,

    I happen to be re-designing a logo for my company. When I did a google search for "style guide" so I could work off of an example for my company's style guide. I found Sacramento State's. I have to say, it was top notch. On average, it costs about 15k just to do a logo at a firm. Since it looks like there was a big effort to establish a brand/identity for their collateral as well - it seems reasonable to me. It also certainly makes more sense than having to design it two or three different times and have lost the opportunity to be consistent. I think anyone who disagrees may be jealous, or just have no concept as to how many hours of research and development go into such a project.

    - K Monsees

  4. I agree, Katrina. Many people do not understand the value of logo design--especially during these days of online logo services. The logo is an investment in the future of a company, organization, product, or service. It is a signature guarantee of a brand promise.

    It is possible to have a pretty-looking logo designed without considering these things. But this will result in eventual logo redesigns, brand confusion, and missed revenue generation.

    How much is a logo worth? It depends. How much is a company willing to spend to get a good return on investment in the future?


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