Ensure Your Brand Consistency by Employing Style Guides
When it comes to branding its all very well and good to have a well considered, strategic logo, however if these brand assets aren’t consistently and coherently rolled out onto all of your printed and online marketing collateral then you have missed your opportunity to maximise your branding and strengthen your image and profile in the marketplace.
Very often we have clients who come to us for logo design then try to cut corners by using a desk top publisher or an in-house employee (usually the office manager who has some InDesign experience) to roll out all their marketing pieces. The result is usually a disaster when it comes to their brand identity and in most cases they may as well of not bothered going through the process of developing a strategic logo and brand in the first place. Now Im not saying that clients need to constantly engage an agency to roll out all their design needs, sometimes the marketing budget just doest allow for this, however if you are going to use in-house resources make sure you have a coherent style guide for them to follow.
A style guide will cover many of the do’s and don’ts that your brand assets need to follow. Some areas we cover for our clients in these guides include; Mission Statement, overarching Brand Assets & general usage (positioning, clear space, colour options), type face family and usage, colour systems, treatment of imagery (photography, custom graphics, icons).
Then there is usually a section that outlines these rules in situ, with sample applications i.e. stationery including business cards, letterheads, memo, fax, email signatures, report document, website etc.
Recently Fresco was approached by Essence, a building project management company, wanting us to develop their brand. They had an established logo but wanted to create a unique corporate identity to improve their brand recognition and visually portray their company values. Fresco developed a series of Personal Profiles, Project Outline Sheets and a comprehensive Proposal for Essence to present to a prospective international client. We are in the process of developing a style guide for their brand to cement the brand architecture and ensure that all their collateral both in-house and designed externally, is true to the brand. In this way Essence will have the freedom to work with multiple service providers in regards to their design material secure in the knowledge that all the hard work that has been done so far on their brand is maximised.