Since many enterprises already have a lot of work on their plate, conceptualising their identity isn’t at the top of the priority list. For that reason most companies don’t have a brand book. And those that do have one, put it at the bottom of their drawer. Yet a brand guide is of inestimable value to a business; developing a strong and inimitable identity requires a framework that crystallises your values, goals, image, among other things. Besides, it will yield more engagement, clients and a better return on your marketing efforts. Too time-consuming? Let us convince you that composing a brand book is well worth your effort.
First things first … what is a brand book?
To put it briefly, a brand book is a blueprint of the company’s identity or, in other words, the brand’s bible. Take the latter quite literally; this inspirational manual bundles formal guidelines on how your internal staff and external stakeholders – such as freelance designers and marketing agencies – should propagate and display your brand. More specifically, the brand book contains layers upon layers of directions around:
– the brand story
– the core values
– the brand personality
– the vision and mission
– the logo use and its variations
– the tagline
– the typography
– the colour palette
– the tone of voice
– and the image style and imagery.
Entire library of benefits in one volume
Do you really need a brand book, you ask? Absolutely! Putting one together may be a tedious process, but no matter how small or large your business is, having all those different chapters brought together in one volume has a lot of long-term benefits.
First of all, you perpetuate your brand. The company’s management, team members and partners can fall back on that compilation in the event of a repositioning or a rebranding to reaffirm their foundations, or if something slips their mind. Did you forget the RGB, CMYK or Hex code of the brand’s colours? Simply grab the brand book, flick through it and refresh your memory.
Secondly, the fact that the brand book is always within reach, helps your entire enterprise achieve consistency. From copywriters and designers to project managers and even sales teams; a brand book aligns the different departments and ensures that they deliver consistent messages. Both internally and externally. On the one hand, the in-house communication between teams and team members is in sync. Everyone is on the same page and steers the brand in the same direction. On the other hand, they communicate a uniform and always on-brand marketing message to the outside world, since every aspect related to your brand is respected across all communication channels.
Furthermore, the above-mentioned consistency is in turn favourable in the quest for your business’ holy grail: brand awareness, recognition and, ultimately, loyalty. Not only will your own co-workers as well as your (potential) customers have a clear, holistic vision of what your company does and stands for. Given that your business is an open book, they will also perceive your brand as reliable and professional, and eventually become lifelong brand evangelists. In contrast, a design or personality that’s too varied can be confusing, diluting the brand identity and damaging the company’s trustworthiness.
The financial aspect is also alluring. According to Lucidpress’ survey on the impact and value of brand consistency among over 200 organisations, strong brands are expected to earn 23% more revenue annually. If that does not pique your interest in brand books, we don’t know what will.
Last but not least, we think that the most important benefit of a brand book is that it’s an identity-preserving document for when the founders leave the company. Think about it this way: how can you be certain that the new CEOs don’t drastically change the authentic core of your brand? The answer: with a brand book. The soul of your brand continues to live and your brand cherishes its rich history.
Happily ever after
All things considered: a brand book isn’t just an eye-catching manual to frame as office decoration. It’s, in fact, an important marketing masterpiece that every company, small or large, should carefully carve. As an identity is necessary for your brand to stand out in the crowd, all teams and team members should familiarise themselves with the guidelines of the brand book and apply them in every corporate communication. And if you, as a founder, are about to leave the company, you don’t have to worry about its continued existence. A brand book is namely an everlasting attribute, transforming your enterprise from a ‘once upon a time’ to a ‘happily ever after’ tale.
I need a brand book…
… is what you’re thinking, right? Reach out to us to compile your own.