Best basic design ideas and font tips for law firm logos
At Legal Media Matters, we design logos for our clients. Our objective is to give them a distinctive image that reflects the firm’s taste and preferences. To help lawyers who are looking for ideas, I’ve asked our designer, Enrique Serrano, to share some tips and examples to help you create the best logo for your firm.
Geri L. Dreiling, Esq.
Think of a law firm – one that wins large awards and conveys a professional image. What comes to mind? Chances are, the logo of the law firm is what you pictured.
As I explained in “Law Firm Logos: The Image Sends the Message,” a law firm’s logo is important. You don’t have to be familiar with complex branding theories to realize that the best attorney image comes with the best legal logo.
But what makes the best law firm logo? Every profession has its own target market, symbols, design influences, rules and preferences. In this two-part series I’ll share essential tips and ideas that will help you create the best law firm logo that will represent your image.
A classic or a modern law firm logo?
Law firms are usually conservative in their branding. Law is a serious profession built on tradition and experience. Classic logo styles that emphasize trust and professionalism work well.
But that doesn’t mean you should avoid modern law firm logos altogether. A modern logo can be distinctive in this highly competitive market. It may be the preferred style for an innovative firm with a younger client base or for a firm that represents trendier or technology sector companies.
Best approaches to designing the brand of your legal firm
Most law firms bear the names of the lawyers or partners in the firm. If that is the case for your firm, your legal logo could be focused on your name or on your firm’s name.
Another approach to logo development is focusing on a specific practice area. A patent law firm might want to adopt a logo that looks more technology oriented. A firm that handles mediation might want a logo that emphasizes conciliation or win-win negotiation. Such an image can be very effective on your website, a quick way to convey your practice area niche to visitors.
I also think it advisable to include a tagline in your law firm logo that makes perfectly clear the nature of your business. A name such as XYZ Associates, accompanied by a legal symbol and the phrase “attorneys at law” or “personal injury lawyers” is the best way to communicate this clearly. When it comes to Web visitors, the fewer the questions about your firm and the more quickly visitors understand what your firm is about, the better the odds that you will land new clients.
Best font ideas for law firm logos
Most legal logo designs are intended to convey a classic, trustworthy, professional feeling. The best typefaces for this approach are classic serif styles. Roman typefaces, in small caps or all caps, work well to convey a sense of trust and strength.
Although most law firm logos are designed with classic serif typefaces, a slightly more modern typographic design can also work. One way to create a modern law firm logo is to use a simple, clean sans serif typeface. Something bold would be appropriate, but steer clear of anything over the top, because agile styles with thin clean lines are still preferred.
Other favored fonts include italics, which lend a distinctive and dynamic appeal. Even some elegant script, classic and almost calligraphic fonts could work. The best law firm logos always avoid fonts that are too casual or fancy, however.
If you decide to include a tagline or just a clarification about your main practice, it’s a good idea to use smaller type, because it is a secondary element for your logo. Italics make a tagline feel more personal. I also suggest using a different font than the one your main law firm name appears in. This will keep a clear distinction between the firm’s name and the accompanying tagline.
Conclusions about law firm logo fonts and basic design
Remember that the best law firm logo enhances a firm’s image. Your logo should convey an image of trustworthiness in a distinctive way. In part two, I will discuss the best symbols and best colors to use in your law firm’s logo.