Brand Guidelines: what are they and what should you expect?

Brand guidelines are essentially an instruction manual for your new brand.

The primary goal of brand guidelines is consistency. They communicate a set of rules that ensure your identity remains uniform across all customer touchpoints. Each time a client or customer comes into contact with a company, whether that’s by visiting the website, calling the office or receiving marketing material, the message must be consistent and the identity must be uniform.

Building an instantly recognisable brand can be very time consuming but adhering to the rules in the brand guidelines will speed up that process. The best brands are recognisable just by a colour and nothing else (think Cartier red or Tiffany blue) this is done through years and years of brand uniformity.

What is Included in Brand Guidelines?

Positioning Statement

A statement derived from the brand attributes exercise during discovery. It’s a sentence that describes that what, why, when, who and how of your brand.

It’s important to define your onlyness, a term coined by legendary brand strategist and author Marty Neumeier. What makes you different? What makes you the ‘only’?

The positioning statement is so important. Consumers these days have so many choices- if you don’t stand out, you lose.

Brand Archetype

In psychology archetypes help to understand who a person is, but archetypes also work well for corporate brands. They help define an organisation’s strengths, their values and beliefs, and clarify their brand and identity.

User profilesThe user profiles of your ideal clients, created during the discovery phase, will be included in the brand guidelines for your reference. It’s important to run all decisions through the eyes of your ideal clients.

Colour Palette

These are the colours that make up your brand. The brand guidelines will include RGB, CMYK and Hex colour codes as well as Pantone colour references where applicable. We like to use paper from luxury paper smith, GF Smith for most of our branding projects. We reference this in the colour palette if used.

Correct Logo Use

Instructions on how your logo should be used. This can include different lock ups, colour options, minimum sizes and exclusion zones.

Typography

The typefaces and families that should be used in all brand documents.

Patterns

We often develop supporting patterns that can enhance your identity. We include advice on when and how to use such patterns in the brand guidelines.

Iconography

If iconography is important to your brand, we can develop a unique icon set for you to use in presentations and on your website.

Templates

We include advice on using any templates that we have designed, this could be Powerpoint presentations, white paper or blog templates.

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