First impressions help in shaping the way new people perceive you before they start knowing more about you. An inaccurate first impression is hard to change.
Your visual brand identity should have a huge impression that will denote what your business is about. It can either draw people in or turn them away.
Visual styling will amplify your business awareness, which consequently will help define your brand name in the market. Why is that important? Well, most brands need to boast promise about their service or products at the forefront of customer’s minds. Without a brand persona, your brand will slowly wither away.
What Is It & Why You Need It?
A brand style guide is a catalog that regulates how an organization presents itself to the world. It includes the elements of your visual identity as well as a list of how and where to use logos, colors, and typography. This guide aims to maintain consistency by demonstrating what a brand looks and feels like when presented in any channel or medium.
How to Set It Up?
- Base It On Your Brand’s Intangible Pillars
According Percolate marketing agency blog post Defining Brand Identity, visual branding is just one part of your brand pillars, which includes your business’s mission, values, purpose, positioning, the tone of voice, look and feel.
Parts such as mission, values, purpose, positioning, the tone of voice are all intangible brand pillars, but they are the core stone of each marketing material you use. Basing your brand style guide on them will help you determine the best way you want your brand to represent itself visually to your potential clients, and how you want them to perceive your business. If your visuals do not match your mission and values, it will frustrate and confuse your clients.
Setting your mission and values will help you determine the picture that you want your visual elements to reflect when used across different mediums.
- Create Your Logo, Create Your Flag
Imagine a world without logos. Imagine your favorite football team without their customized clothes, your country without a flag, and your favorite watch without a brand logo. A lot of unique attributes will be missing without them.
Visuals are the first thing our brains process. Having a compelling logo is the most valuable visual element in your brand identity. It’s your flag. It speaks about your business, delivers a visual message about your mission, and gives clues about the level of service or product you are offering.
Have variations of logo designs within your brand style guide to help you utilize the appropriate brand image on different marketing channels and materials.
- Choose the Colors that Trigger the Right Emotions
When it comes to brand recognition, colors play a primary role. The choice of shades influences audience’s emotions and help them differentiate between competing brands. Lots of studies proved the effect of colors on the clients’ emotions.
That is why an intensive research should be done before choosing the final colors of your brand.
According to Colors Psychology website, a lot of tech firms chose or green to reflect a sense of liveliness, calmness, and refreshment. Financial institutions chose shades of blue to reflect trust, security, and dependability. Meanwhile, many retail outlets picked orange or green as a brand color to reflect a cheerfulness, optimism, and stability. Most food outlets chose various shades of red because of its ability to trigger people’s appetites.
Have your approved colors in your style guide to use the same shades across your marketing materials to ensure building a reputable brand and minimizing the room for error.
- Pick a Typography That Reflects Your Brand Image
To have a reliable brand, you have to select a suitable typography. Fonts play a significant influence on people’s purchasing decisions and help in emphasizing the message your brand tries to deliver. Choosing the wrong font style can be bewildering and may leave them feeling blasé about the whole experience.
Typography concerns the style and appearance of any lettering or fonts used as part of your visual brand identity. These characteristics can have a significant influence over people’s purchasing decisions and help to emphasize the message of your brand further.
Typeface and font choice can affect whether the right message is communicated and these should conform to the overall visual brand style. Wrong decisions can be devastating, for example, Comic Sans font, which reflects a sense of playfulness, is not the right choice if you want it to reflect a serious brand image.
Decide your primary and secondary fonts and their preferred font size and add them to your guide.
Keep Your Brand Style Guide Near Your Hands
In today’s competitive market you can’t afford to fail in making the decision when it comes to your visual brand identity. In business, first impressions matter. That is why having a brand style guide is important if you are aiming for a reputable brand image.