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What are brand guidelines and why do you need them?

What are brand guidelines and why do you need them?

The way a brand looks is far more than just the design of the logo. This is just one artefact, comprising several elements. The brand guideline is a document containing the word mark and/or symbol, the primary colour scheme, secondary complementary colours, fonts and a set of rules on how these elements fit together. Brand guidelines form a toolbox to extend the brand identity, by following a series of carefully compiled rules.

They don’t just help your business internally, they allow the public and other businesses to understand how you want your company portrayed, what logo variation you want used where and what cannot be done to your identity.

This allows for your brand identity to stay clear throughout all areas where it is publicised. It can also help with tone of voice within emails to clients and making sure your business uses the same ‘voice’ throughout all communications.

In this blog post, we discuss 4 key points as to why brand guidelines are important.

1. Consistency

We always talk about consistency in branding, as without it, your brand can get lost and disassociated from your business. Brand consistency leads to familiarity, familiarity leads to trust, and ultimately, trust leads to sales. Don’t change the message too often or too much from your core values and message – this can be a big mistake.

2. Recognition

When we speak of brands such as Apple, what is the first image you visualise? Whatever it is that comes to your mind – whether it’s the sleek apple logo or a shiny silver Macbook – that’s the power of solid branding. You are easily able to distinguish a brand amongst a group of companies selling similar products. Having strong and consistent brand guidelines will help users identify and recall your brand better in the future. It also allows for consistency within the public eye.

3. Save time and effort

Having a set of rules that everyone can follow, either for a new design, a new marketing campaign or communicating online with clients is handy in saving you time. By simply handing over your brand guidelines, you’re sharing the basic rules on how to use your brand. This saves both time and effort of you needing to explain things every time, but also of the person using the guidelines, as they can easily get on with using the branding with confidence.

4. Maintain a desired image

A law firm may want to consistently use a certain tone of voice, perhaps one that is heart felt, informed, but also friendly – text talk and jokes probably aren’t appropriate for this type of business.

Brand guidelines will help maintain this image of professionalism desired by the law firm, through the consistency of use of brand elements. This could be from the colours used online and in print, font choices for web and in emails, as well as the tone of voice of these communications.

If your business needs a rebrand then we can help with this. We can also provide brand guidelines that fit around our designs that are easy to follow and cover every element of your brand.

Let's all get creative together

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