Why an AI Logo Generator Can’t Compare to a Human Designer

You need a logo fast and, preferably, cheap. So, you instantly google ai logo generator and find many places to get a logo cheap or free. But is this really a smart idea?

Brand Design
May 12, 2024

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There’s no shortage of data that confirms just how vital logo design is for business branding. But can you expect the same level of quality with an AI logo generator as with a professional designer? Let’s explore.

There’s no shortage of data that confirms just how vital logo design is for business branding. But can you expect the same level of quality with an AI logo generator as with a professional designer? Let’s explore.

A logo is often called the face of a brand because it’s the first thing many people recognize about it. However, a logo is much more than that. It’s a visual representation of your brand’s identity and a foundation for the success of your business strategy.

Let’s look at a few eye-opening logo statistics:

  • 60% of people will avoid a company with unattractive logos regardless of how great their reviews are (Study Finds);
  • 75% say logos are the most recognizable brand identifier (Renderforest);
  • 50% of people are more likely to buy from brands whose logos they recognize (Study Finds);
  • brand loyalty is worth ten times more than a signal purchase (Venngage).

So, logos build customer loyalty and, by extension, increase profits. However, logo design cost is among the highest for a single graphic design project. Moreover, many customers get frustrated since logo design costs range from 0 to tens of thousands of dollars.

Wait a minute, 0 dollars? Yes, you heard it. Completely free (or almost free) logo designs are usually found with online logo makers that use AI, such as Tailor Brands or Wix logo maker, as well as open-source tools like Midjourney. So, what is AI logo, anyway? These days, the term usually refers to logos created by artificial intelligence (AI) based on your input.

It’s become a very popular way of creating good-looking logos for little money. Many bloggers, content creators, and small business owners turn to this option as an easy way to get that one piece of design without which no business or professional can survive.

How does logo generator AI work?

Usually, it’s a matter of a few clicks. AI works by learning, so instead of simply choosing what elements to put into your logo, you are often given choices. This helps AI software to understand your style and preferences, and create a logo based on that.

To give you a better idea of how it works, I’ll walk you through the process of creating an AI logo with a famous logo maker AI from Tailor Brands.

First, you need to type in your business name. You can also add a tagline if you want. I’ve chosen “Nike” and “Just do It” so that I can compare the end result to the actual brand logo.

tailor brands ai logo 1.png

And here are a few other less successful examples. I would say that, again, they have a sort of childish quality that doesn’t quite fit with the brand’s insistence on high-performance sports apparel and equipment.

Let's compare the custom "swoosh" sign to this checkmark. The latter has a childlike quality (it reminds me of finger painting) that simply doesn't work for the brand.

And voila! While there were several other designs, here's the one that looked closest to the actual brand logo. At first glance, the logo maker did quite well.

If you’re unsure how does logo generator AI work, this next step sums it up. Basically, you need to choose different styles you prefer over others to help AI understand your preferences. I chose 3 styles that seemed closest to Nike’s brand.

The next step is where AI logo design gets tricky. The software asks you to choose between geometric shapes or select an icon to your liking. You can already see the downside, right? If you’re not a designer, it can be challenging to determine at this stage what might be a good fit for your brand.

To be fair, both approaches have their downsides. Too many options mean the results will be less focused. A single logo style might prevent you from thinking outside the box and creating something unique.

Now you need to choose the type of logo you want. Tailor Brands offer 3 options, text, icon, or initials. Different logo makers sometimes skip this step and provide options for different logo types.

Then, you need to specify your industry and provide more details about your brand. I’ve copied part of Nike’s mission statement: “Our mission is: To bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete in the world. If you have a body, you are an athlete.”

Next you need to select what your offer is. You can choose from: physical goods, services, leisure and hospitality, original content, technology and software, or other. In this case, I’ve obviously chosen physical goods.

tailor brands ai logo 2.png
tailor brands ai logo 3.png

Following Nike as an example, I chose icon-based in this step.

tailor brands ai logo 4.png

But I played along and chose a few check mark icons that looked similar to Nike’s swoosh.

tailor brands ai logo 5.png
tailor brands ai logo 6.png
tailor brands ai logo 7.png
tailor brands ai logo 8.png
tailor brands ai logo 9.png

This example shows perfectly the pros and cons of AI logo generation in practice. While you may come up with something decent, perfection is challenging to achieve. Moreover, remember that I've created this example with a model in mind. Imagine how difficult it would be to do the same with just a vague (or no) concept in mind.

But let’s go a bit deeper and actually explain the benefits and disadvantages of AI generated logos.


Benefits of AI logo generators

Now that you no longer have to google "what is AI logo," it's time to discuss the benefits of using AI design tools for getting a business logo.

Is it possible to get a quality logo with AI generators? Yes. But where this option really shines are "passable" logos that cost next to nothing. Let's look at the main benefits of an AI generated logo.


1. It’s cheap

Logo design cost is notoriously hard to grasp. Some famous logos cost tens if not hundreds of thousands of dollars. Other iconic logos, such as Coca-Cola and Google, cost nothing. How is that possible?

Sometimes you can get lucky, and sometimes a knack for design can help even non-professionals develop something excellent. As far as AI logo generators go, prices usually range from $20 to $100, which is still relatively cheap for a logo. In comparison, professional logo design costs between $300-$1,000 on average

So, if you run a local business that’s tight on budget, this is definitely a major pull factor for AI logo generators (and AI tools in general, including social media AI tools).

2. It’s fast.

Nobody likes waiting for design, and logos are no exception. A professional designer will need days, if not weeks, to provide an idea. If you decide to take things into your own hands, you might have a logo in minutes.

Granted, speed is usually not the most critical factor in logo design (unlike ads or other designs you might need ad hoc). However, this is the category where AI logo generators have no competition.

3. Lots of variations

In an ideal world, anyone starting a small business has done a thorough research and developed a clear art direction for their logo and branding. Unfortunately, this isn't always the case.

Many people turn to AI logo generators precisely because they don't know what they want exactly. Even the stage where you have to choose between different options is a valuable opportunity to get some ideas.

Moreover, these logo makers will usually provide more than one option (usually, at least 3-5 are somewhat in line with your needs). So, even if you want to flesh out a more definite concept, logo generators are a great address to start from.

Downsides of an AI generated logo

Now you know that business logo generator AI has a lot of positives, especially for a small business owner strapped for budget and time. But is everything always rosy? Let's examine why an AI logo is not such a fabulous idea.


1. Lack of originality

You're putting your own information into the AI system. At the same time, someone else might be doing the exact same thing.

Logo generators don't devote any particular time and care to your request, so you can hardly hope that the limited information can lead to something that's 100% original or unique.

In fact, if you go for this type of logo, don't be surprised to see something very similar to one of your competitors.

2. No understanding of your target audience

Branding starts with market research and creating buyer personas? Well, a free AI logo generator won't have this information. Sometimes, you might be able to put in some general target audience information (demographics). Still, the details and nuances won't go into the finished result.

It's a common mistake because people aren't sure how logo generator AI works. They will often help AI learn by choosing images and logos that appeal to them personally instead of with their target audience in mind. Therefore, the end result could be inappropriate for a business of that sort.

3. No nuances or fine-tuning

A logo is a small yet extremely powerful piece of design. Imagine the Facebook logo in pink. Or Coca-Cola in serif letters. See what I mean? It would be a completely different logo for a completely different type of company.

AI logo generators often come with a terrific logo that misses the mark just by a little. However, if you're not a designer, these nuances can be challenging to spot and even more so to amend. It's something that you usually notice after some time, at which point you'll need to rebrand and that often costs a lot more than the initial brand creation.

Why hire a human to design your logo

Now that we've discussed the pros and cons of an AI logo designer let's look at why human logo designers are often a much sounder route.


1. Deep understanding of your target audience

A designer always creates with a target audience in mind. And that goes much further than primary demographic data and your brand's industry. A professional designer creating a logo will research the relevant style preferences and trends to create something that really hits the mark with the right people.

Let's take an example. Suppose you're looking to create a logo for a language learning app. An AI logo generator would probably come up with several options, including books, speech bubbles, or other obvious symbols. But a clever logo designer created a loveable mascot meant to encourage (or pester) students to improve their language proficiency.

You know who I'm talking about. You've already missed today's lesson.

duolingo meme.png

2. Originality

There is much debate around the topic of whether AI could ever compete with human creativity. While some AI enthusiasts think that day is inevitable, it's definitely not here yet.

The fact is that no matter how refined, AI is still limited by human creativity. As a tool designed to help us, it's also meant to learn from our experience. So, while an AI logo generator will need a bit of time to pick up the relevant trends, it's the human designers who create trends.

You might not think of your business as trend-setting, and that's alright. But remember that human designers can (still) create more unique designs that will help you stay distinguished from your competitors.

3. Creation of brand identity

While there are many AI logo generators out there, sophisticated tools for automatically creating a polished brand identity are still not widely available. A logo is simply the foundation. Your visual identity stems from it and encompasses the entire look of your brand.

This can mean different things and different challenges for a designer. For example, you might have several products meant for different audiences. A logo is universal and must be present everywhere, but the packaging design for these will have to differ. Can an AI logo work equally well, just slapped on different designs?

Similarly, if you do a significant portion of your marketing offline, a logo needs to be designed with that in mind. Gradients and motion design elements can look brilliant in a digital setting. Still, they are difficult (or impossible) to pull off on print collateral.

Human designers take all of this into consideration when creating a logo. Their goal is never to simply churn out a nice-looking graphic that can also be used as a logo. Instead, they always create with a vast picture in mind and make sure your logo is a perfect foundation for your brand.

Why shouldn't you hire a designer?

So, if designers are so detail-oriented and creative, why the need for AI logos anyway? Let’s look at some of the challenges of working with designers.


1. It’s expensive

This is a point we've mentioned several times already. Why would you pay several hundred dollars if you can get a logo for free or well under $100?

Another thing that puts off prospective graphic design clients is that this is just a single design project at the end of the day. Your graphic design needs may start with a logo, but they certainly don't end there. So, it can be somewhat counterintuitive to splurge so much on a simple graphic

2. Styles can be limiting

We’ve already discussed the limits of AI generators’ creativity. However, humans also come with limits to their own creativity. When design is concerned, this is usually a matter of style.

Each graphic designer has a style that’s often evident in their work. A skilled designer will know how to adapt their style to the needs of the client and the requirements of the project. However, thinking outside the box can sometimes be a real challenge if the project is far beyond the scope of what they’re familiar with.

3. It can be slow

Speed of delivery is another point we’ve touched upon. If you can get a logo in minutes, why wait days or weeks?

The design process can sometimes be unpredictable, especially if you  work with freelance designers. Logos often require numerous iterations and several brainstorming sessions. So, it can be hard to predict when the final result will be ready for use.

Where can I get a logo?

There are plenty of ways to get a free logo, but this is rarely the way to perfection. A logo created by AI can be useful in the first instance. However, these logos will fail to help you connect with your audience and build lasting impressions in the long run.

Of course, hundreds of dollars for a single logo can seem very steep for startups and small businesses trying to get their feet on the ground.

Unlimited design services such as ManyPixels offer an affordable, easy alternative to hiring freelancers or full-time designers. With our flat-rate monthly subscription, you can get all the designs you need for as little as $549 a month!

Moreover, you get access to a whole team of designers with various skills and diverse experiences. Whatever your need or industry, we have a professional on our team that will be a perfect fit!

Our graphic design package includes a logo as well as your entire visual identity, and any other graphics you might need subsequently.

Subscribe now with our 14-day risk-free guarantee. Put in your logo request today and get a professional design to help you reach your business goals!

Having lived and studied in London and Berlin, I'm back in native Serbia, working remotely and writing short stories and plays in my free time. With previous experience in the nonprofit sector, I'm currently writing about the universal language of good graphic design. I make mix CDs and my playlists are almost exclusively 1960s.

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