Your Brand Identity Guide: The Basics
September 28, 2021
A brand identity guide is an important document every business should have. It should follow a business’s journey, but it can be built at any time.
Near the kickoff of your business, you might be on the lookout for a logo designer. A brand identity guide goes hand in hand with a logo package creation, but you’re probably wondering, “What exactly is a brand identity guide?”
In this blog, we’ll cover what’s included, its importance to your business, the difference between a brand identity guide vs. a brand guide, and when to use the guide. Let’s get started.
What is included in a brand identity guide?
At the very least, your business might only have a logo and maybe a vague color palette. When you, your team, or vendors are working with your brand, questions might come up on how to use your brand properly or at least keep it consistent.
The brand identity guide includes most of your brand’s visuals. It covers your brand’s basic elements, such as your logos, colors, and fonts; all of which can bring a little more consistency to your business.
Businesses should have more than just one logo. If you have only one logo, you’re either as successful as Nike, or you don’t think you need other versions. A professional company can pivot and swap in an alternative logo variant depending on the workspace.
This guide brings clarity on the best logo to use for different formats. Curious about what to look for in a logo designer? Check out this blog.
Brand Color Scheme
What you don’t want is inconsistent brand colors. Although YouTube and Coca-Cola’s primary color is red, they are indeed different.
Both brands have a standard look, and they ensure consistent brand colors. Consistency is professional. Be sure you’re aware of how different colors affect your brand, and use colors to make your company appear more professional to your target audience.
For additional tips on color schemes for your branding, read this blog.
Another one of the important brand identity elements is the font(s). It highlights your company’s fonts, how to style the different header, and the body copy’s general look.
It’s easy to overstyle fonts, which results in a discordant brand. Font styles should cover everything, including different font weights, underlining, italicizing, and capitalization.
Of course, be wary of the number of characters in your headers if you go with an ALL-CAPS styling, as this affects legibility. You can read more about this here.
Why is it important to have a brand identity guide?
As we mentioned before, consistency is important, and your brand should be this way at all touchpoints. This builds a sense of trust and professionalism. This guide will assist you in keeping all your creative assets cohesive with your brand.
As this marketing blog states:
“Brand inconsistency generally leads to: miscommunication, brand confusion, erosion of trust, and poor customer experience.”
Chances are, you’re not the only one creating your marketing graphics or ads. You might be connecting with a vendor about a printing project, and they are most likely unfamiliar with your brand.
This guide isn’t foolproof, but when utilized, it can help make everything feel like one unity–even if you have multiple people involved with your brand. (Need design assistance? Request information about our brand identity design services today.)
What are the differences between a brand identity guide and brand guide?
Here’s a quick look at the difference between both documents:
Brand Identity Guide
Think of your brand identity guide as your company’s basic document. It covers most of the brand’s visuals and goes in-depth on the brand’s logo, color, and type styles.
The brand guide contains the full brand identity guide plus more in-depth knowledge on the company’s background. Some of the parts that make up the brand guide’s core are sections about the brand’s positioning, content, voice/tone, promise, and more.
This guide initially covers all the brand’s behind-the-scenes decisions. It helps significantly with content for the businesses website, social media posts, collateral, and more.
When will I use a brand identity guide?
Use the brand identity guide when you’re unfamiliar about how to display the business in a public or internal way. If one is working on an internal document for the office, you should reference the brand identity guide’s’ font and font styling rules.
If you’re creating something for a flyer or Facebook ad, you should reference many different pages from the brand identity guide. You can also utilize this document when sending files to a magazine or print vendor that is assembling your design projects.
Use your brand identity guide to ensure your marketing assets are in alignment every time. Earn the public’s trust, and connect with your audience by using your logo correctly, using the proper color codes on both print and online formats, and making sure your font and type styling are consistent.
Go the extra mile, and get your brand guide (brand identity guide included) created. That way, your tone, messaging, and delivery are all in position.
Investing in a brand identity guide helps with the basics of getting your business started. Don’t chance looking unprofessional and untrustworthy. Contact BrandCraft today for help with your brand identity design.