This is one way to explain branding…
imagine your favorite character or a person and they always wear one or two colors and accessorize themselves with certain elements.
They buy the same food, they always eat the same meals at the same places, and always play the same songs over and over again in the car. People always seem to have a ‘pattern’, to say the least.
Keep in mind this fact: according to the research of Dr. Fred Luskin of Stanford University, a human being has approximately 60,000 thoughts per day—and 90% of these thoughts are repetitive!
This is why it’s so hard to break a habit and change a person.
Someone having the same thoughts day after day ultimately does relate to branding and marketing.
A person can market themselves (without knowing it), and a business can market itself by telling the same story and sending the same message over and over again.
Here is another fact to consider, the rule of seven, which states that the prospective buyer should see your message seven times before they buy from you. So it is good that you are constantly publishing content over and over again for your user.
It all relates.
So how do brand guidelines work? Take a look at top brand guidelines from companies your familiar with.
Let’s talk about the core pillars of design that you should keep in your back pocket as brand guidelines.
It is good to have 2-6 colors that represent your brand. You want the color scheme to have primary and secondary colors that give contrast against each other. A great free tool for this (and one of my favorite websites is: https://color.adobe.com/
Open a PowerPoint or google slide deck and screenshot the color palette and type in the hex codes. You will need to provide this information to your designers to create any future collateral that is for your website, social media, email banners, and more.
You can establish any type of shape, element, or some type of design consistency in your brand. For instance, it can be as simple as your ‘call to action button’. You can ask questions like:
– Should the button always be one specific color?
– Are the corners of the button round or squared?
– Are there gradients?
– Is one corner flipped in?
– Should you use an icon on the button?
There are many characteristics you can give your branding with design assets. You can use vector dots, cartoon characters, 3D Animations, icons, mascots, gradients, decorative lines, and so much more.
The answer to your messaging comes from understanding your audience. When you know your audience, then you will easily discover your mission statement, tagline, and campaign promotion. Your audience has all the answers to your messaging.
Your business offers a solution to a problem. Keeping the message ‘bottom-line’ will make it easy to understand what your company does and how it can help benefit your prospective client.
Texture and Aesthetic:
You can tell a story with the texture of the photograph, the paper/packaging, or the environment. Setting the tone can put a person in a nostalgic mood that can be relatable to the product or service of your business.
The type of lighting and setting can set the tone of the brand. Businesses also use smell or lighting in their brick-and-mortar stores to attract guests and encourage them to buy.
Keeping fonts simple is most effective in your brand story. It is best to have one regular font family and one decorative font. This will keep your design clean and easy to understand. Use it on all types of mediums to keep your brand consistent through all mediums.
Using images that relate to your audience will make your brand story effective. People love validation and being relatable.
The images can be lifestyle images of a person ‘in the moment’ of what your ideal audience normally does.
For example, it can be a person doing yoga, working in the office, working on a zoom call, working in the warehouse, living in an apartment, drinking water, and so much more. Whatever is relatable to your audience, is the type of images you should use.
You want to let people know that you the solution to their problem and that you understand them, and what they need.
Using icons is very effective to use in your brand story. Icons will guide a user on a page when there is alot of information, many features, services, or products.
Tell Your Story! It is good in this case to be repetitive and to constantly remix and repeat your brand elements. You want to stay top of mind and be the first one to be thought of if anyone talks about the type of work that your company does.
Simply using the exact colors, fonts, and messaging each time will give your brand consistency and people will instantly know what your company does and what it stands for.
- Color Palette with Hex Codes
- Font Family
- Lifestyle Images
- Background Images
- Custom Images
- Product images
- .PNG Files
- .ESP Files
- Working Design Files (if possible)
- Past Design Assets (if possible)
- Call-to-Action Buttons
- Taglines used
- Messaging used in the past
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