You’ve invested a lot into your brand. You’ve spent time perfecting images, your logo, deciding what fonts to use, and how you want your brand identity portrayed. You know how you want your business to be represented, however, there is one more piece to the branding puzzle that is essential to making sure that happens correctly and consistently.
What Exactly is a Brand Style Guide and Why Do You Need it?
Good question! A brand style guide is a visual representation of your product and services, and details exactly how your brand should be used by internal teams and partners in the marketplace. Basically, branding guidelines help people know when, where, and how your branding should be used.
That’s where a brand style guide comes in because, let’s face it, your brand does a lot for you. It helps you create a strong identity, instigate dialogue, create awareness of what you have to offer, and is a useful tool for your employees to ensure they are always using your branding in the right way.
Ready to Get Started? Here’s a Few Things to Consider:
Know Your Brand Identity
Your brand is unique. It speaks to your customers and tells them precisely what they can expect from your products, services, and deliverables and helps you stand out and differentiates you from your competitors. Decide what you want your brand to say about you.
Speak to Your Audience
Your voice and tone are important when representing your brand. Knowing who your target audience is can help you determine the right way to market your brand and how your own team and partners should be presenting the brand so it’s clear and consistent. Being able to speak about your products and services in a familiar and reliable tone helps establish recognition and your audience will be able to identify you simply by the voice presenting your brand.
Establish Some Style Guide Essentials
- Your Logo: a visual representation of your brand. It’s important to include specifics like how large your logo should be, spacing requirements, and if there are specific versions to be used at different times. Remember that your logo can become extremely recognizable, so be clear with instructions for use to ensure consistency.
- Fonts: Be specific here! Choose a font, sizing, and placement that will be consistent through all of your branding and marketing efforts.
- Color: Choose a specific color palette, identify color ratios, and where your colors are to be used for all marketing efforts. Example: Which specific colors should be used for your logo and which specifically for your text?
Consistency is KEY!
We can’t stress this enough. Your brand style guide helps build awareness and recognition, so that your clients, partners, and consumers continually distinguish you from the competition. Ensure that your logo, text, color palette, and voice and tone are always uniform wherever they are being used and don’t change depending on who is using them. Everyone within your organization should be comfortable using the style guide to best communicate your brand consistently in the marketplace.
It’s Time to Create Your Brand Identity
Whether your just starting your business now or you’re already well established, it’s the perfect time to create a strong branding brand style guide. Need some help getting started? Check out our Strategy and Branding page to see some of the ways we can help take your brand to the next level. And remember, your brand represents you, so set some rules, keep it consistent, watch it grow.