Be on-brand, always
Your company’s brand guidelines help you to communicate the story of your business. The document all the special elements of your brand identity that make you stand out from the crowd. It ensures your brand is powerful, authentic and consistent
At OLO we are always banging on about consistency – but with good reason. It is the most effective plan your brand can execute. Fully exploring how your brand should look, sound and feel and putting this down in black and white is a seriously beneficial exercise. By defining not only the visuals but the less tangible parts of a brand such as your tone of voice, brand personality, values and mission can really deepen the impact of your marketing efforts.
Sending out more meaningful and targeted brand messages and making sure your materials always look the part generates familiarity and trust. If you know who you are, what you stand for and why you are the best at what you do – your customers will too.
What do brand guidelines include?
A basic brand guidelines document may only outline the visual aspects of your brand – so how it looks. It will give guidance on how to use all artwork elements of your brand properly. For example, it will specify which fonts to use and in what sizes and weights. It will explain how to use the logo and its variations in different applications and with the appropriate amount of clear space and other regulations and It will outline exact colours and style of imagery.
A more comprehensive (and much more useful) brand guide will contain the deeper parts of your brand such as your brand personality, voice, target market, values, mission statement and marketing strategy. These are the elements that bring brands to life and give them that human touch. A brand with depth is one that is able to connect with people, and ultimately, what will make people choose you over your competition.
How are brand guidelines used?
Your brand guidelines will be used by everyone who would apply your brand from in-house marketing teams and designers to external suppliers. The document ensures everyone uses the right shade of blue, the right tagline, the right font. It ensures every detail is used in the correct manner. Not everyone in your organisation will ‘use’ your brand – but this document should be made accessible throughout your whole organisation.
Everyone in your company needs to be singing from the same hymn sheet. For example, your front-line customer service employees need to embody your brand. Every interaction your company has with the outside world needs to be on-brand. So every employee needs to understand the vision and overreaching goals of the company, the tone of voice and the values. The brand must be represented consistently at every touchpoint.