Brand Guidelines-what are they
and why do I need them?
From the clothes we wear, to the food we eat and even the cars we drive home in, everything is a brand! It is almost impossible to go even just a few hours without coming across a brand of some sort. The truth is we are constantly surrounded by brands and marketing, therefore whatever your product or service is, there are bound to be lots of competitors fighting for your customer’s attention daily.
You may have spent a lot of time crafting your website, updating your marketing material and reciting your company values, but the main question is – have you at any point considered your brand guidelines?
If the answer to this question is no or even ‘what are brand guidelines?’, then you are certainly in the right place. But not to worry it is never too late to develop brand guidelines and recognising that you need them is the perfect incentive to start creating them.
So what are brand guidelines and what do they include?
To sum up brand guidelines briefly, they are a set of elements and tools that work together to create a cohesive, consistent message to send out from your branding.
Brand guidelines include:
- Colour palette
- Logo design
- Brand tone – tone of voice/image/captions
Everything from the way your logo looks, the colour palette you use, your typography and even the way your content is written, can be planned and defined in a way to make sure it is consistent. Without a set of brand guidelines, companies often lose key elements which are integral to the brand. These elements could be the use of logos, set colour palettes, how and when to use imagery and also the company’s tone of voice.
Think about the way you talk to your boss, the CEO or a potential customer, although you remain the same person, the way you communicate changes based on the person you are talking to. Your brand tone of voice needs to combine your brand personality and values with consideration on how it talks to your target audience.
So you may be wondering, why are they so important? why do I care?
It doesn’t matter if you have 5 people in your business or 50, brand guidelines are critical to helping any brand work. We understand that you may have created your brand and you confidently feel like you know everything about it. However, what about a new employee? Will they perceive and maintain your brand in the same way you do?
This leads us to reason number one…
Consistency is key when it comes to getting the best out of your branding, so why not have a set of guidelines in place to help maintain your brand image? A consistent tone of voice and a consistent brand identity not only helps keep a business on message, but allows it to be more immediately recognisable.
This brings us to reason number two…
2.Helping to maintain a professional image
Elements of your branding such as consistent colours, logos and typography, whether online or offline help to maintain a constant professional image for your brand.
Therefore, brand guidelines provide you with the tools to do this successfully…
3. Providing tools and guidance
Your brand guidelines aren’t just about setting rules though. They’re about providing you and anyone else sending out a message from your brand with the tools to keep your branding consistent. The elements included in your brand guidelines work together to create a cohesive message and those elements are the tools you need to create moving messages and iconic marketing communications.
This may all seem a lot to take in and you may be thinking where do I start, but this blog is simply just to explain the importance brand guidelines you should have in your business strategy.
So where can we help?
At Media Village, we not only work within brand guidelines supplied by our customers, but we also help to produce them. We spend time with our customers to ensure they understand each section and we answer any questions they may have.
We can follow this discussion by producing high quality designs to communicate these brand guidelines effectively.
If you need any help or have any further questions about brand guidelines, contact us on 01254 300000 and we will be more than happy to help.