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Fonts & Branding

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Fonts can be a very touchy subject when it comes to branding. There are those you can’t use without purchasing the rights, those that can be used for free by non-profits only, those that are for personal use only, and those that are free for commercial use and personal use. There are also several personal preferences that can very from designer to designer. For instance, one font designer may want you to pay them what you think the font is worth to you. These are things you will have to find out from the designer you got the font from.

One big thing, no matter where you found the font, you should always try and find the designer that created it. Some sites may allow a free download, but that doesn’t mean you can use it however you like. You should always read the “README” text that comes with almost every font download. I have come across many “free” fonts that are only free for personal use, so be careful.

When working with any designer, they may show you fonts (especially if you’re on a crowdsourcing site) that look really nice, but they don’t tell you about them, so it will appear as though you can use it however you want. This is unfortunate, so it’s always a good idea to ask where the font is located so you yourself can find it and read the text with it.

Another idea would be to ask for a custom font. Some designers will make one with your business name by hand, and others will base it off another font. It’s a good idea to ask if a base font was used for the inspiration, and if so, compare it to see the similarities.

These are only pointers to help you out. There may be serious repercussions if your company has been using a commercial font without purchasing a license. Remember that a font has been custom made by a font designer. It’s their work you will be using to promote and sell products. Compensation is only fair.

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