Brand Guidelines/ Brand Manual/ Brand Book

They are one and the same

There’s a lot more to brand guidelines than just logo usage. This one-stop guide takes you through some of the key elements, what they signify and why each of them matter. Read on for a crash course in establishing brand identity.

What are brand guidelines?

A set of instructions that capture what your brand stands for and how it should communicate. They cover your brand strategy and identity.

Why they matter

  • Ensure consistency for better brand recognition
  • Create perceived value as customers find your brand reliable
  • Make it easier for readers/viewers to consume your content

Here are 7 essential elements of a brand manual

But not limited to these

  • Brand story
  • Brand voice
  • Logo and logo usage
  • Typography
  • Colors
  • Imagery
  • Design templates
  • Brand story
  • Brand voice
  • Logo and logo usage
  • Typography
  • Colors
  • Imagery
  • Design templates

What are the parts to your brand’s visual identity?

brand-guidelines

Logo and logo usage

  • Reversed, single color, and other variations
  • Minimum size and proportions
  • Clear space around the logo
  • Dos and don’ts
  • Responsive logo for mobile view
brand-guidelines

Colors

  • Primary colors
  • Secondary colors
  • Hex codes for web
  • CMYK for print
brand-guidelines

Typography

  • Fonts for headlines, sub-heads, and paragraphs
  • Font sizes, spacing, and alignment
brand-guidelines

Imagery

  • Guidelines for photography, illustrations, and icons
  • Examples of images that perform well
  • Mood board on feelings the brand should evoke
brand-guidelines

Design templates

  • Examples and references for ads, marketing collaterals, stationery, print and digital publications

How do you craft your brand story?

  • Mission and vision: Why your brand exists, where you aim to be in future, and how you plan to get there
  • Brand positioning: What your brand offers as unique benefits to your customers
  • Core values: What matters the most to your business
  • Audience personas: Who you’re trying to attract as potential customers

What should you include in brand voice and messaging?

  • Be clear on what and how your brand should communicate
  • Examples of use cases – social media ads, emails, and press releases
  • Tone of voice and preferred word choices
  • Dos and don’ts

What are some best practices with respect to brand guidelines?

  • Keep it simple and easy to understand
  • Include a separate section on web style guide
  • Update regularly and share with all stakeholders
  • Create an abridged one-page version for quick reference

Consistent brand presentation across all platforms increases revenue by up to 23%

Source: Lucidpress (The state of brand consistency)

It's up to you now to ensure your brand guidelines are an accurate representation of your brand, and followed in all communications.
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