What to Include in Your Company's Brand Style Guide
A brand’s style guide, also known as a brand book or brand bible, is an invaluable tool to ensure that brand identity is maintained and upheld across all channels and platforms. From logo design and application to the layout of your website, a style guide is there so that everyone who touches the brand represents it as consistently as possible.
Simple concept? Yes. But it can be difficult to figure out the specific elements to focus on. So we’ve provided five items below to get you started on your style guide and make your way toward a more maintained brand look and feel.
Color palette. A style guide should fully identify specific colors to use across all aspects of a company’s branding. It should designate primary colors, secondary colors and color combinations to incorporate across both print and digital platforms.
Imagery. Be sure to indicate the brand’s overall style in terms of imagery. Choose which colors can and cannot be included in the imagery. Also, you’ll need to decide the types of images to use. This section will also set guidelines for when, as well as how, you’ll use the images.
Typography. Whether the medium is print or digital, guidelines for font styles, colors and sizes should be specifically documented. For instance, it is important to select which fonts and sizes correspond to headers, sub-heads and body text.
Logo specifications. Standards concerning the treatment of your brand’s logo need to be as specific as possible. The details in this section need to be exhaustive to the point where you’re specifying all acceptable sizes and modifications in accordance with appropriate placement options.
Copywriting parameters. The words you use to convey your brand’s messaging are just as important as the elements that contribute to the look of your brand. The right words allow you to express the desired tone in order to appeal to your target market’s sensibilities. Setting parameters in this regard ensures that all copy fits in with your brand’s overall image.
If earning brand equity is your goal, you’ll need to nail down brand consistency. A style guide is a great way to help you achieve this goal. Keep in mind that each branding element you include should align with the brand’s underlying strategic foundation, which also contributes to the overall consistency.