Branding guidelines are the glue that holds your brand identity together; it holds the key to consistency and integrity of the brand.
We come across so many companies that do not have branding guidelines and experience a lack of consistency with their marketing, which leads to diluted brand messages.
And it is not just for big companies. Even the smallest of companies can benefit from a set of standards for their brand, which outline the basics, to help all employees portray the brand consistently.
It is the responsibility of everyone in a company to read and understand the branding guidelines in order to communicate the brand effectively to customers. It should become part of day-to-day business to just know the right fonts, the right colours and the keywords and messages that are key to the brand.
Branding guidelines are also essential for any external companies that carry out any creative work for your company, such as designers, advertisers, copywriters, architects etc. Most agencies will provide your branding guidelines as an electronic file that can simply be sent to any external partners who may require them.
In their most basic form, your branding guidelines, may simply include your logo, fonts and colours.
A full set of branding guidelines should include your logo, fonts, colours, exclusion zone, marques/icons, correct logo usage, taglines, graphical elements, examples and what the brand stands for.
Maybe you have branding guidelines, but they sit in a folder somewhere and no one really uses them?
All of the elements of your brand have been specifically been chosen to represent key values of your company, so there is no point having them & not using them!
They are there as a tool to help build your brand and it is not just the responsibility of management, but every employee within a company to adhere to the guidelines. For example, for new starters, the branding guidelines should be part of the induction process. And never think it isn’t relevant to a particular person because their role doesn’t involve marketing, or design, or sales. Every employee will communicate with external companies, by email and telephone, and perhaps by letter, and there should be consistent visuals and language across all communications.
Hopefully I have explained the importance of branding guidelines in a clear, concise way, but if you do have any questions, please contact [email protected]