What is a Brand Style Guide?
What is a Brand Style Guide?
Brand style guide or a Brand Book or a Brand guide is nothing but your brand’s vision, values, and mission transformed into design. It is that communicator that helps content creators to effectively and consistently communicate a message to your audience. A brand style guide is a guideline that explains an organization on how to present itself to the world through its color, font, logo, photography, selections, and much more.
Having a brand style guide not only helps in maintaining the consistency in how a brand sounds, feels, and looks, but also makes sure that your brand’s look and feel doesn’t change even though you have different people working in an organization.
Why is it important?
Your company’s personality is your brand identity. The brand’s identity is how the world is going to be able to recognize you as well as trust you. It is a known fact that most people tend to distrust those who keep changing and acting differently all the time. It is the same with brands. People tend to trust brands that are evolving but not constantly changing and who’s core values, vision, and mission has remained the same throughout. Inconsistency by an organization/brand will not only confuse the audience but will also alienate them.
The brand style guide prevents that from happening. It ensures that you communicate a consistent message in a consistent way across channels and teams. It also supports your brand’s marketing initiatives by certifying that all the messages are relevant as well as related to your brand’s goals. The brand style guide also makes sure that the content put across is unique and distinguishes from your competitors.
Key Ingredients of Brand Identity
Knowing your brand is a must. Every brand has its core values, missions, target audiences, vision, and brand personality. These are the key ingredients that a brand needs to establish its brand identity as it projects what you stand for and what you believe in.
All these ingredients are tangible and well-defined elements that help in communicating to the world the key components of your brand through creativity and design.
The key components to create a successful brand identity are:
Mission and Vision:
The first and the most important element of brand identity is the mission highlighting why your brand exists and a vision highlighting where you want your brand to go. These statements don’t necessarily have to be big, but they should be true to your brand and should hold importance in your organization.
One of the main elements of creating a successful brand identity is Brand Personality. As a brand, you need to know what sort of adjectives you would use to define your brand with. It could be anything from quirky, classic, to even sophisticated, and trendy. Taking input from members of your team could be beneficial for this element.
Core values form the base of any brand/organization. Determining these core values is important for the actions and decisions that are taken by the company. It also acts like guiding principles for your team to stay on-brand.
Knowing your customers is as important as knowing your brand. Determining who your customers are and why they would require is a vital element for your brand. It is always a good idea, to know your industry, competitors, and do market research, this will help you incorporate any insights that might help your team to communicate more efficiently and effectively.
Your brand identity is more than the products/services you sell or provide. Knowing your brand is the first step to creating a brand style guide. For a successful and efficient style guide, there are 5 steps to creating a brand style guide that would help you get an edge over your competitors. While some brand style guides can be complex and tedious, others are simple, it all depends on your brand needs and listing down the five key elements will take you a step further towards your goal.