what even are brand guidelines?

If you’re a small business or brand I’m sure you have some form of brand guidelines. If you don’t, or don’t realise why you need them, then this post is for you.

What are brand guidelines?

Brand guidelines are a document (either printed or digital) that outline the main components of your brand. Within brand guidelines you usually find a section on brand colours, a section on fonts, and a section on types or style of imagery. Most documents will include your core brand message and key words that represent this message so you can keep your voice consistent.

For example, at Seabird I am quite strict about graphics remaining black and white. This allows the colours from my design work to stand out as the colour within my marketing. When I do use a splash of colour, I go for orange because of my little logo’s beak. Having my guidelines accessible means I can easily refer to them and stay on brand at all times.


Why do I need brand guidelines?

Every business needs a set, particularly if you have more than 1 team member or are not 100% concrete on your brand just yet. It’s so easy to go off-piste when you’re a small or personal brand, it can be tricky to keep a lid on all the things that should and should not be included in your marketing and social media. Brand guidelines take away some of this uncertainty and ensure your brand remains consistent and memorable at all times.

Unsure if that graphic is relevant to your business? Check the brand guidelines. Unsure about what colour to make the text on your website banner? Check your brand guidelines. Want to keep a consistent look throughout your instagram posts? Check your brand guidelines and create a system. Consistency is the key to a striking, memorable brand. If your imagery and tone of voice and values are all over the place, no one is going to get a good idea of who you are and what your business is.

Where do I get brand guidelines?

If you’ve had branding created by a designer, they should be included in that. If they haven’t included these or they weren’t discussed, it may be worth getting in touch and getting them sorted. If you already have a logo and a good idea of your brand - get in touch with a branding designer who can work their magic into an accessible document for you.

You probably could create them yourself if you’re 100% certain on your brand and the style and content you’re aiming for. There are free design tools on the web which you could use to compile a colour scheme and a range of fonts. Once you have them nailed, DO NOT DEVIATE. The whole point is consistency and building a strong, clear brand across channels.

Can Seabird create brand guidelines?

Yes we can! We can solve all your branding needs - whether you’re just starting out or need assets and guidelines once you’re further along. Feel free to contact us any time.

Naomi BowdenComment