In today’s digital world, chances are you’ve invested a lot of time and money crafting the perfect message, logo, marketing collateral and website to represent your company. All of these elements work together to create your brand identity, which will make your company more recognizable to those who already know you, or those who want to know you better. This process involves many parties such as, designers, content writers, marketers, and employees; all of which must collaborate to ensure every element of the brand works well together.
All of the time and money invested into your company’s brand will go to waste if your brand doesn’t stay consistent, which is why your company needs a brand guide. The guidelines will provide structure on how any brand elements should be displayed by following a list of tools and rules.
Here are 3 reasons your company needs a brand guide.
1. Brand Consistency
When becoming recognizable, keeping your company’s identity consistent across all digital and print media is very important. To ensure that your brand is always represented properly, your brand guidelines should include:
• Brand Overview (Explanation of your Brand and who are you)
• Logo Usage and Misusage
• Color Swatches
• Collateral Design (Print and Web)
If a customer reads a whitepaper that you produced, and a week later stumbles upon an infographic that instantly reminds them of your whitepaper (based on the look and feel), then you have achieved brand consistency! This creates a foundation of trust that will keep your customers coming back to your product or services.
2. Rules Apply to Everyone
Once a brand guide is created, numerous people can benefit:
• Designers and Vendors- With the guide to use your logo, colors, and fonts, as well as your website as a reference, any graphic designer, web developer, printing service, etc. will have a clear vision for how to design your print or digital media.
• Employees- At some point throughout any workday, your employees will interact with the company’s brand. Whether it’s creating an email, landing page, presentation, or marketing collateral, employees can create consistency from one media to the next, by following your brand guidelines.
• Content Writers/Marketers- Whether you mean to or not, the color and fonts you choose for your brand set a tone for your company. Even the tagline you choose has an effect on your company’s voice. In order to get an understanding of your voice, content writers will look to your website first to see how you speak about your products and services.
3. Save Time and Money
Putting the time into creating a brand identity for your company can help you avoid some terrible disasters. Could you imagine paying a design vendor a large sum of money to create an infographic without providing any brand guidelines? There’s a good chance they deliver something you absolutely hate and doesn’t match the brand (which you thought was obvious). Or imagine a vendor distorted your logo to fit the design they thought would work best. You’d probably be extremely frustrated and angry with yourself for spending money on something that you’ll never be able to use. Having a brand guide eliminates any questions vendors may have concerning the look, feel and message that you’re going for, prior to beginning production.
You’ve worked hard to develop all of the elements and assets that make up your brand; don’t let anyone change that! Having a brand guide holds everyone accountable for using your identity properly and helps eliminate confusion or questions about how the brand should be displayed.
If we’ve inspired you to protect your brand and develop or revamp your brand guide, but you don’t know where to start, feel free to reach out and see how we can help.