Just Give Them the Monkey
Even when the client wants a logo with a monkey, and every fiber of your soul rejects the concept, a lesson in customer service reminds us to just give them the monkey.
Recently, a designer of mine was working with a client who wanted a new logo for a technology forum. This particular client, like many other tech-savvy people I know, is unfathomably enamored with the Google Android icon, and predictably, wanted a logo that “looked like that”, but maybe “more like a monkey”.
Being the creative director, and assuming my brain only shits gold, I steered the designer away from that idea and launched into a multi-round design fray designing a logo that looked like anything but Android or a monkey. My designer’s ideas were clever, colorful, metaphorical, painstakingly rendered, extensible to the brand. He presented them with pride, knowing he had my back.
From the client: radio silence.
The designer followed up, asked for another meeting, offered to create alternative ideas or show how our logo could be adapted. He tweaked it, agonized over it, showed our design team more comps and sketches. Pride beget frustration beget apathy. We didn’t know how quite to proceed.
Weeks later, an e-mail from the client. In it, he attached several images of cartoon monkeys, and asked if the logo could be more like that. Like a clock winding backward, apathy beget frustration, and then, sighful resolution.
We scrapped everything, and my designer went back and designed a logo with a monkey that looks vaguely like the Android thing.
- My brain does not shit gold.
- My designers are awesome.
- Just give them the monkey.