Now before you say anything, let me just say... I know there are good businesses out there that don't necessarily have a great logo, but what I am about to share with you is all about giving your business the greatest chance of success.
So no matter if your business is just starting out, or you're looking for ideas to improve your existing business, these are principles we have tried and tested over many years of helping heaps of business with their branding.
People really do make decisions within the first few moments of meeting you, and it's the same when they meet your business... If the first time a person sees your business is via a business card, website or any marketing medium and the impression they get from it is 'unprofessional', then it's highly likely you're missing out on potential leads just because you didn't put a bit of time and effort into the look of your business. It might sound shallow but people are drawn to appealing things, so if your competition looks better, then they are most likely getting more business.
So many times I have seen businesses sell themselves short... It might be that you're presenting your business as a one-man-band (and there's no need to let people know this) or having a business name such as Frank's Yard Services. Mistake 101 though, goes to having no logo or a logo that you designed yourself (or it looks like you did). With some creativity your logo and overall image can come across as an established business/franchise, so don't sell yourself short.
Here's a quick example of what we mean:
The key is be consistent with your logo across all mediums, eg: stationery, vehicle, building signage, uniforms, menus etc. This will create a clear and consistent message and will make your marketing work so much better.
The other day I was walking past a new restaurant, and while their logo wasn't bad, the presentation of their shop was poor and even worse, the only employee I saw when I walked in was a person sitting slouched in a chair, unshaven and with a cap on. I got the immediate feeling that they were not expecting or wanting business, which is exactly what they got.
People deep down want to be in a positive and engaging environment, so at the most basic level, if your logo does not speak of professionalism, then it's very likely people will not get excited about your business.
So to summarise, be passionate and professional about your business (and it's logo) - show that you're serious about being in business, and doing business. Then be consistent in the presentation of your branding across all mediums that customers come in contact with your business.