Here’s an exercise, write down all the things about your company, service, or product that you want it to communicate to your core audience. What are you promising? How do you want people to feel about you? What is your mission, vision, core values, emotional appeal? How do you want to be perceived?
Now, pour all of that into a very unique and specific “mark”—something that is instantly recognizable and represents all that you are.
A brand is the collection of a company’s/product’s attributes. A brand guide, therefore, is the rulebook to clearly define those attributes. It includes a logo, but it’s not just a logo. A brand guide includes all the very tangible elements such as colors, fonts, voice/tone, mission, vision, core values, etc.
But a brand is more than just an identity—it’s an outward expression of a promise.
A brand guide must also illuminate those intangible characteristics of The Promise your brand imparts.
>Emotions: That little robin’s egg blue box will bring her tears of happiness.
>Empowerment: That swoosh on the sneakers will give me confidence to become a better athlete.
>Surety: Those golden arches will provide a fast meal at a cheap price.
>Timeliness: That pizza will be delivered in 30 minutes or less.
The list of brand characteristics goes on and on… knowledge, value, innovation. When your audience recognizes your mark and understands the promise that it conveys, then you begin building trust, loyalty, engagement, and meaning.
So, why do you need a brand guide?
Because your brand is systemic. Every person in your organization must live and breathe the brand. Your brand guide is the authoritative primer to provide consistency for everything.
>Social media presence
>Paint color on the walls
>Furniture in the rooms
>“Hold” music on your phone system
At Toolbox Studios, we make it our business to fully understand your promise. Our Branding Process includes discovery, design, development/production, implementation, and evaluation. If you need a brand, a brand refresh—or if you have a brand but don’t have a brand guide—we can help you. That’s our promise.