A graphic design refresh is needed when your brand, logo, or communications look outdated. It may look outdated because the design is no longer representative of today, either in style or because the business has evolved. Granted, some logos and styles are timeless and are still effective. This is a rare exception. More often than not, even logos that seem timeless are updated with minor changes.
Minor changes over time to a logo or graphic design of a website or other materials is ideal. Most companies and businesses evolve and it’s best for the design aspect to evolve with it. This is not to say to change your logo every year or couple of years. It is recommended to keep it until it starts looking out of touch or just doesn’t fit any more.
Sometimes a complete redesign of a logo, brochure, website or other marketing instruments is needed.
It may be worthy to do a survey and get the opinions of close associates, your best clients, or a professional opinion from an experienced graphic designer. Aside from your logo, the web design is probably the most important visual marketing tool you want to absolutely keep updated. The design of your website acts as a store-front and it will influence the opinions and decisions, made by prospects, about your business.
A logo is the name and face of your business and so you don’t want to skimp on that. It’s important to keep the logo design up to date so that your business looks in sync with the times. You don’t want your business to look like it’s an ancient relic.
On a side note, speaking from the point of view of a graphic designer in Los Angeles, I’ve seen some designs implementing some retro features from the past and successfully modernizing other aspects. These types of designs are popular among some young designers here.
Though sometimes it’s advantageous to have some similarities with a past style, but not exactly like it. Perhaps, an exception can be made for used vintage items or a few small niches. For instance, if you sell 80’s sunglasses, it may be advantageous to have a logo or marketing materials having some 80’s stylistic qualities, but with a modern twist to keep it fresh and interesting. What you don’t want is boring. If the design looks like many others it’s going to look boring. Boring is not memorable, nor desirable.
Unique graphic design is memorable.
It’s important to note that graphic design is a very creative enterprise. A design for a business is evaluated and or performed within context and it’s unique existence.