The hospitality space is challenging, the truth is that there is lots of competition and you will be constantly judged by your customers on their overall experience.
The experience includes hundreds of touch points your customer encounters, from how easily they can find a park, the signage which welcomes them, to the packaging on the mint as they walk out the door.
Whether it is a restaurant, cafe or food truck, it's not what you have planned which counts, but how your customer perceives it and the likelihood of them spending money on the day, coming back the next, or sharing your restaurant on social media.
Of the hundreds of interactions your customer will make with your cafe or restaurant. Today we will discuss what I believe to be a low hanging fruit. The graphic design elements which make up the identity of your restaurant's brand or your cafes logo.
I will discuss things to consider for your cafes logo, a few examples and how to execute this.
Public NYC, Restaurant Logo on a Flag Sign
Keep it simple
We live in a time where less is more in the branding world. Keeping your logo simple will make everything easier as well as keeping your cafes branding timeless.
Here is an example of a cafe's branding in LA, Maru Coffee. Which could not be more simple, but it works really well.
Maru LA, Coffee Logo on canvas bag
Maru coffee, LA, Simple Cafe Logo on Building
Focus on Color
Choosing your palette is absolutely crucial if you are going down the simple route. If a simple logo is not accompanied by beautiful colors it will come across as unconsidered. Color also refers to textures throughout your space - a few examples are craft paper coffee bags, raw canvas gift bags, soft wooden details on your menu board.
If you are using white, turn it into a light cream to humanize it and if you are using bold colors - make them soft and a little bit faded.
Here is a good example - Honey Bones have used a faded blue with a cream typeface to keep things simple and let the colors speak for itself. This restaurant branding extends past the printed logo to include textures such as linen to give the brand depth without complexity.
Make sure you look at a Pantone swatch book to check the color - as they can vary from what they look like on the screen to how they show up on paper.
Honey Bones, New Zealand, Simple Cafe Logo
Honey Bones Restaurant branding throughout the space.
Typeface is crucial
With today's style or restaurant branding favoring simplicity and font based logos, it has made things easier for hospitality graphic designers. However, it has placed a lot more importance on the choice of font for the restaurant logo.
If the font is off, the entire logo will not work. But there are so many fonts available on the internet, the choice is endless.
You can alter the font to suit the style of your cafe logo in the adobe suite but I would recommend playing with the kerning - which is the spacing in between the letters. Most modern logos have the letters spaced out.
When designing your cafe menu, be sure not to mix too many fonts - never have more than two fonts. One for the headings and one for the body.
Versatility is key
Your restaurant logo will go onto the side of your building, your cups, napkins and your cafe's Instagram. It needs to be both universal and legible.
I recently saw some cool applications for a restaurant logo. They had branded matchboxes and also temporary tattoos which the customers could put on. This encourages customers to post on their own social media channels and promote the restaurant for free!
A beautiful cafe logo on a simple coffee cup will also encourage posting. This is called User Generated Content and is very valuable
Post Coffee Logo on George & Willy Round Sign
Keep it real
Your cafe logo must breathe what you are and what you stand for. If you are an industrial minimalist restaurant the simple font-based logo will work well for you. If you are a family-owned traditional farmhouse cafe you may want something a bit more illustrative for your restaurant logo. Above all it must be something you love and shows your customers what you are about.
Example of a simple cafe logo at Atelier September in Copenhagen
When you design a logo or receive your restaurant logo concept from your designer just ask yourself 'Would I wear a t-shirt with this logo on the front to a BBQ with my friends' If the answer is no. Change it - to something you love.
Good cafe logos and restaurant logos make everything better, your photos will pop, your signs will stand out, your coffee cups with be beautiful. Your Hospitality logo is absolutely crucial to nail, invest in it and give it time
Our good friends Sunday Best are great at branding if you need a hand.