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If you own a company, there is little doubt that you know the importance of marketing. Regardless of the size or industry, there are few aspects of running a business more vital than making sure that people know about your products or services and that they are unique.

In this day and age, the Internet has made it possible for anyone to start a company from scratch, publish a website, and begin offering their wares and skillsets to the world with the click of just a few buttons. But all that won’t amount to much without effective advertising and promotion to the people who could use your business, and there is one important puzzle piece that arguably trumps all others in this regard: the logo.

You see them everywhere. They are completely unavoidable. And the good logos work on multiple levels all at once. Nike’s famous swoosh. The golden arches. 

With the necessity of having a corporate identity, logos become the cornerstone on which the rest hinges and hangs and builds, from business cards and billboards to packaging and everything in-between. The web presence of a company, of your company, requires such an emblem. It’s a symbol that is immediately associated with your organization and the services and products you provide.

However, there is more to this story. Logos were once flat and two-dimensional, and in many cases still are. For many situations and implementations, this is more than appropriate, anything else being unnecessary or even impractical. But the online world contains endless potential and flexibility, and the most innovative minds have discovered newer and bolder ways to stand out and create a name for themselves that says to their potential customers, “We are different, and we are better.” 

The answer, naturally, is an easy affirmative, and one of the quickest and easiest ways to make this transition transpire is to develop a three-dimensional version of your logo. While more is not always better, in this regard, it usually is. Having a 3D rendering of your company’s logo (or a 3D logo as your primary identity) gives you and your marketing team far more versatility in advertising and brand awareness. 

It strikes the viewer (your potential customer) as different and conveys a sense of purpose, elegance, and whatever else the brand is about and the message and vision that you want to express online, in print, and everywhere else.

The benefits of having a 3D logo

There is so much that 3D logos can furnish in addition to its two-dimensional counterpart. For starters, the immediate visual impact is unmistakable. It communicates a depth and a significance that only working in three dimensions can provide due to the creative versatility of having that elusive third angle from which to work.

Think of it as similar to the difference between how traditional Disney animations appear in such films as Snow White or The Jungle Book, and the 3D animations of Pixar’s films in the Toy Story and Cars franchises. Both create incredible stories that affect the viewer and leave an indelible impact on them, but they each do so in their distinct ways. 

One would be remiss to say that one of them is inherently better than the other, but we are certainly far better off having both of them at play and at our disposal. Sometimes, the former is called for, and at other times, the latter. Knowing the difference takes a keen eye and a lifetime of experience in artistry and design.

In the same way that Toy Story changed animation forever, a 3D logo rendering of your company’s design can transform your business for the future. Consider the ability of three dimensions to arrest the eye and bring images into focus. There are aspects, shadows, and depth to 3D logos that 2D renderings simply cannot supply. 

With this, your marketing team can apply the new logo to your existing web strategies and engender a brand-new experience for your users and potential customer base. Lead generation is as important as nearly anything else in running a profitable enterprise, and a 3D logo could be the thing that gives your brand identity the help it needs to stand apart while actively attracting more customers.

Examples of corporate identities using 3D logos

The number of companies opting to use a 3D logo is growing all the time. You’ve undoubtedly seen them online and even in print versions in place of a company’s traditional 2D logo. While it may not be the right decision for every single organization, it is likely to work and benefit the company far more often than not, based on the simple principles of fresh perspective and ability to communicate vision.

Take Sony Ericsson, for instance. Their 3D logo is a multi-dimensional green orb ensconced in a soft, gray, swooping fold. It’s beautiful, elegant, simple, yet it also perfectly conveys what the brand is all about and the products that they are creating, which are, namely, tangible. Apple has done the same at times, since so many of its products are real, physical items. 

Similarly, financial institutions like Barclaycard, telecom giants such as AT&T, other providers and developers like XBOX (from Microsoft), and the ubiquitous VOIP application Skype have worked with 3D imagery. These companies have developed three-dimensional logos to enhance their brand and furnish a deeper sense of what it is they do and are capable of providing to their customers and users. Car companies like Mini and BMW have done the same, which makes perfect sense as they make real-world objects, things that exist in the physical, palpable world and transport people where they need to go. 

All of this does not mean that you and your company should go right out and hire someone to create a 3D rendering of your logo. It does, however, imply that this is an important and ongoing moment, a watershed for corporate design identities and that every company ought to consider the implications of a three-dimensional logo. The negative impact of ignoring the current wave of three dimensions in design could be devastating for a business that decides to pass. At what point will it be too late?

The best practices of logo design

If you decide to opt for the development of a 3D rendering for your logo or a new 3D logo altogether, many options exist today and a number of best practices that designers suggest. Even if you don’t do the design yourself or have someone on your team work on the project, it is helpful to have a sense of how the process works and what ideas you can have in mind to provide for the 3D logo designer you may end up hiring.

For starters, you want to have some solid images in mind. If you already have a flat logo, this will be much easier, as the leg work has already been done. If your company is just starting and you don’t have a 2D logo yet, then this will be the beginning of the challenge, though it is incredibly fun. 

For this phase, you will want to come up with images that you associate with your business and what services or products are in your wheelhouse. Consider looking at other logos to see what sparks your imagination and inspiration to get started.

Once you’ve got the imagery down, you’ll need to have a family or style of fonts in mind so that your graphic designer understands the look you’re trying to achieve. Again, researching other company’s logos will help with this aspect. See what fonts align with your aesthetic and speak to your designer or marketing team about the practical particulars as well. In other words, if you will be printing your logo on a bottle or package, that could influence your decisions as opposed to a company that will largely be displaying their logo on screens or flat print media. All of this matters when it comes to logo design, even more so in the case of 3D rendering.

Lastly, along with images and typography, you will want to know the color palette that works for your brand image. For a company working with water or nature, to provide a simplistic example, the colors blue or green would be natural options. If your organization is a tuxedo rental company, you might go with something like black, gray, and white. These are very simple examples, but they elucidate the more general principle at play: ensure that the colors you pick for your logo actually enhance your brand image and are recognizable in the broader sense of what you and your company aim to do. Be certain with your choices, because branding redesign can be a lengthy and expensive process and doesn’t always even work out (cross-reference GAP’s snafu a few years ago for a healthy dose of reality on that front – or should I say, on that font).

If you have these three design principles – images, fonts, and colors – in mind when you go to work with your designer or team, you will likely be in for a much smoother and less painful process from start to finish than if you went in blind, without any notion of what you wanted to achieve. Again, simply having other companies’ logos as your starting point can be a great place to find inspiration and begin the process of crafting a corporate identity that will generate leads, be a beacon of the character of your business, and last the lifetime of your company.

Software for bringing logos to life

With all the ideas about design that circulate and make their way through different graphics circles, I hope that the previous section helps to get a glimpse of what works and what doesn’t when it comes to 3D logo rendering. Along those same lines, it’s also worth taking a moment to discuss the major software application packages that graphic designers use to create three-dimensional renderings of logos. While there are countless programs available, the four listed here are some of the heaviest hitters in the world of 3D logo rendering and design for artists old and new.

  1. Autodesk Maya — The 3D modeling software of choice for most designers and artists today is Maya. Visual Effects studios, animation services like Pixar, and many others choose Maya’s incredible arsenal of tools and effects as their go-to 3D design application. That said, it comes with a few drawbacks for the newcomer, such as serious sticker shock (it’s pricey) and a steep learning curve (it can be incredibly complicated to the uninitiated). Even with all that, it’s an amazing application and is highly regarded by all in the 3D design community.
  2. Maxon Cinema 4D — Another wildly successful and helpful 3D design and rendering program is Cinema 4D from Maxon (whose credits include such blockbuster films as Blade Runner 2049 and Marvel’s Doctor Strange, to name just a few). The road to mastery of this application is notably more comfortable than that of Maya, and it has seamless integration with After Effects by Adobe to boot. The training and tutorial availability online is enormous and immensely helpful for anyone getting their hands on this for the first time. As this one also costs a pretty penny, Maxon generously offers a free trial package, as well as short-term licenses and discounted licenses for students.
  3. Blender — While Maya and Cinema 4D are quite expensive (even if the latter does offer alternatives to the full cost), Blender is the savior of the impecunious. If you are pinching pennies and want to do this all on your own, download Blender and get started right away. It’s an open-source platform for 3D modeling and design. It offers a competitive set of tools, effects, and resources for costing literally nothing, but it doesn’t work in the same way as many of its more expensive brethren. Expect to pedal up another sharp learning curve if you switch to one of the others at some point along the way. That said, if money is tight and you want to learn something with fewer growing pains, Blender is the path for you.
  4. Autodesk 3DS Max — This is another entry from Autodesk, a longtime titan of drafting, design, and modeling software application packages. It is made exclusively for Windows, so Mac users will need to look to the other programs suggested here (or the many others available). Similar to Autodesk’s Maya, it is incredibly rigorous and furnishes a massive library of effects modifiers, allowing for a more agreeable modeling process for newer designers. Like Cinema 4D, this one also has alternatives to full payment: students can access it without charge, and a trial version is downloadable and useable for a month for everyone else.

Cad Crowd can turn this into a reality

With the rest of your company to manage, letting Cad Crowd become a part of your extended team gives you the leverage to work hard at growing your business. You’ll have the peace of mind to know that the best designers and 3D logo rendering artists in the industry are hard at work crafting an identity for you to have for years to come.

Without a doubt, Cad Crowd is absolutely the best place to get your logo designed, created, or rendered in beautiful 3D for a new beginning. Contact us today to get started.

Freelance 3D CAD designers for all your needs

We work with only the finest freelancers in the world on everything we do, including 3D logo rendering. Our repertoire of designers, artists, and engineers have an enormous amount of experience working hands-on with businesses and leaders in practically every field and industry. Whatever your logo needs may be, rest assured that Cad Crowd can help you get exactly where you want to be. We can find a design solution for anyone, no matter what field you work within.

Cad Crowd can assist you by making use of a wide range of designers and software programs. Our network consists of only the highest quality specialists utilizing the best and latest design software. If there’s a specific app or software you need us to use, just let us know, and we’ll connect you to the ideal artist or designer for your project. Contact us today for a free quote!

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