Affordable Logo Design

January 26, 2010

Logo Design by ndo

Logo Design for Startups

We recently received the following email from a gentleman who had just run a logo design project for his brand new startup. Here is what he had to say about

“Nothing to ask. Just a few quick words.

I just started my first own company after spending many years working for bigger corporations. One of my former employers brought me in contact with 99designs when we crowdsourced some design work. Back then I was happy with the value we got out of it.

Now I have my own startup and am amazed.

With a very limited budget I couldn’t spend much but wanted to get a good logo done never the less. A symbolic act if you will. Good design keeps you going on the long nights when you build a company.

I created a contest with $150 in prize money and told the designers straight up what this was all about. That they were designing for a small startup and that I wished I could offer them more money. Instead I offered
them 100% verbal feedback as quickly as I could possibly give it.

To my delight, the community of 99designs designers jumped on the offer. 3.5 days into the contest we are approaching 120 submissions. 3 of them beat my expectations by a wide margin. I would consider them designs worthy to stand for multi-billion dollar corporations and marketing campaigns.

It is very rare that startups get to play in the same league as the big guys.

Thanks to your site, startups like mine get professional and amazing design work done at a rate we can afford.

Thank you. That’s really all I wanted to say.”


5 Responses to “Affordable Logo Design”

  1. Danny I. Says:

    This is a perspective people often forget. From both the sides of the designers and the companies this is great way to get a long. Of course it’s a cheap way to sell your designs, as a designer. But me, being a full-time student in a new country, really appreciate having the ability to learn outside of school and even make some money on the side of it.

    And as this article shows, being a new small company it is hard to brand yourself and grow bigger with a homemade (WordArt kind of) logo. Having the proper (corporate) visual identity helps a lot and gives a huge head start.

    Cheers to that!

  2. Jason Aiken Says:

    Danny I.

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts – I couldn’t agree more.

    Glad you are enjoying the learning opportunities at


  3. Justin Says:

    Let’s see here Mr. Cheapo. You have the money to start your own business, but you can’t afford to hire a reputable designer? 120 logo designs. An average logo design takes several hours to develop a concept logo (this also requires a consult between the client/designer, not a paragraph long brief). After revisions, the average logo has at least 4 hours of work put into it. That would be $150 for 480 hours worth of work provided by the “crowd”. I don’t see how this website is even legal. The designers with the highest win % are only making $10 or less per hour for their hard work. They might as well be flipping burgers. At least they would be guaranteed a paycheck.

    • Jason Aiken Says:


      I flipped burgers for a long time – but it did not help me get better at what I do today.

      Designers participate because they see value in:
      – practicing their art
      – sharing ideas
      – see multiple perspectives on the same problem
      – building portfolio pieces
      – and yes building client relationships and making money.

      You need to look beyond the single project to see the true value of 99designs.

      Here are some thoughts from some of the designers in the community:


  4. Scott Mosher Says:

    There’s some opposing perspectives to running design contests, participating in design contests and endorsing design contests, not unsimiliar criticism that SPEC work gets.

    There are some valid critiques that design contests also cheapen the quality and standards of graphic design as an artform, medium and profession, and lower the cost of quality creative. There are also legitimate perspectives that contests enable artists to practice their art and garner additions to their portfolio.

    I won’t use this post to proclaim my opinion, as I have invested plenty of time and creative energy in a number of these contests myself, but still, there are distinct battle lines about the art vs. commerce vs. contest scenario in the design world. Valid criticisms and legitimate praise from both ends of the polarized viewpoints.

    There is no answer, only personal opinions. There is no question with the rise of the internet and the digital age, the price of creative and artistic ability has dropped considerably, as the line between “professionals” and “amateurs” has blurred as well. This is true in entire creative field be it music, art, design, whatever. And for better or worse, it won’t be changing in the near future.

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