According to 77% of marketers, branding is a crucial factor in a company’s future growth. Besides building you a loyal customer base, a strong brand will help you attract top talent and reduce your recruitment costs.
For branding to be effective, you must do it strategically, authentically, and consistently across all platforms. Otherwise, you will deliver contradicting messages that will negatively impact the perception of your company. This is why it is essential to have brand guidelines. These are guidelines aimed at communicating brand objectives to internal and external stakeholders.
Brand guidelines are especially important in the early years of a company or when rebranding. They should include:
- The brand identity (core values, vision, mission, tone, personality, elevator pitch, etc.)
- Brand assets and their applications (Color palette, logo, backgrounds, typeface, spacing, etc.)
Brand guidelines allow you to bring together various elements of branding to create a compelling and successful marketing effort. Read on to find out some of the reasons you need to have brand guidelines.
1. Set Standards and Rules for Use
Different elements come together to make a brand unique and attractive. To build the brand’s persona as desired, each element must be used appropriately and at the right time. Whereas you may know how and when to apply them, your employees and other stakeholders may not.
When crafting brand guidelines, the first order of business is outlining how and when you shall use various branding elements. This includes things such as typography, spacing, colors, and when to use wordmarks versus a logo.
2. Consistency and Recognition in Your Brand Guidelines
One of the most important elements of successful branding is consistency. This is what makes your company recognizable to customers and helps them perceive it as reliable. Therefore, each time a customer sees marketing materials such as forms, business cards, or even your website, all branding aspects should be consistent. Set rules that will ensure brand identity is communicated consistently across all platforms.
Since it takes several impressions for consumers to remember a brand, consistency will improve recognition, thus hasten the process.
3. Increased Brand Awareness and Reach
Whether it’s your marketing manager or a new employee responsible for a campaign, brand guidelines ensure that employees use your branding correctly- the right tagline, shade of red, font, or logo size.
It also unifies your employees and ensures that they deliver similar marketing messages. According to a Forbes article, this can increase your brand’s reach by 561%.
4. Customer Loyalty
One of the best ways of achieving long-term success is by unlocking the lifetime value of each customer. You can only achieve this by delivering a good customer experience, and brand recognition is a critical factor.
90% of consumers prefer purchasing from companies whose branding is consistent across all platforms. Brand guidelines will enable you to deliver such consistency, increasing the chances of gaining repeat customers.
5. Professionalism and Reliability
Before making a purchase, consumers want to know whether you have the capacity to deliver and are reliable. With brand guidelines, you can set out a corporate tone that’s friendly and also professional. Also, by maintaining consistent messaging and use of branding elements, you demonstrate attention to detail, which presents you as a reliable brand.
The Power of Branding
Aside from your products’ quality, a strong brand is the most powerful asset a company can have. As such, it should be designed carefully and cultivated well. Though it may take years before branding efforts yield results, they will undoubtedly be worth the wait. However, you must have brand guidelines to ensure actions are consistent across the board.
Andy Bush is President of Bush Marketing. Contact him today at 416-214-4298 or firstname.lastname@example.org for a discussion about how Bush Marketing can help your website do more for your business.