When you think of a successful brand, what comes to mind? Perhaps it’s the iconic logo, the memorable tagline, or the consistent messaging across all platforms. When a five-year-old spots the ‘M’ of Mcdonald’s, the child immediately recognizes and demands it. That’s how impactful the brand’s logo design guidelines are. Many such elements come together and that is in short your brand’s DNA definition – the unique identity that sets it apart from the competition.
But how can a brand ensure that its DNA is consistent and recognizable across all touches? This is where brand guidelines come in. These guidelines serve as a roadmap for the brand, providing clear instructions for how to represent itself visually and verbally.
In this blog post, we’ll explore the best brand guidelines and their importance that are followed by every brand design agency. How they can help you create an ideal brand DNA definition. We’ll dive into the key elements that make up brand guidelines and provide tips for creating guidelines that are both comprehensive and easy to follow. So, whether you’re a seasoned brand manager or just starting to develop your brand identity, read on to learn how brand guidelines can help take your brand to the next level.
Understanding Brand DNA:
A relatable Brand DNA definition would be to compare brands to people. They too have personalities, values, and a unique set of characteristics that make them stand out in a crowd. This is where the concept of brand DNA comes into play. Brand DNA is the fundamental core of a brand – the characteristics that define its personality, mission, and values. It’s the heart of a brand’s identity that shapes everything from its logo to its messaging.
Some brands have an instantly recognizable and incredibly strong brand DNA.
For example, when you think of Nike, what comes to mind? For many, it’s the slogan “Just Do It”, or the tick logo, in short, it’s the brand’s unique fingerprints embedded in its logo design guidelines and the tone it has used for its marketing. This is a prime Brand DNA example that has become synonymous with the brand. Other companies, such as Apple, have a distinct brand DNA that is reflected in their sleek and modern design aesthetic and their focus on innovation and creativity along with elegance.
Creating Best Brand Guidelines:
Once a brand’s DNA definition is identified, the next step is to create brand guidelines. They are a set of rules that dictate how a brand’s visual and written communication should be presented. These ensure that all communication is consistent and aligns with the brand’s values and goals.
Without them, a brand’s identity can become diluted, and its messaging can become inconsistent. Imagine if every time you visited a McDonald’s, the branding was different, and the messaging was inconsistent. You would likely become confused and unsure of what the brand stands for.
Components of brand guidelines include numerous components. Let’s dig in!
Logo design guidelines and color palette: Your brand is the face of your company, and your logo and color palette are the first impressions that you make on your audience. Your logo design guidelines include it to be visually striking, instantly recognizable and embody your brand’s personality. Similarly, your color palette should be cohesive, memorable, and representative of your brand’s values.
Tone and voice: Set the mood for how your brand communicates with its audience. Are you playful and fun, or serious and authoritative? Do you use humor or stick to a more professional tone? Your tone and voice should align with your brand’s personality and target audience to create a consistent and engaging brand persona.
Imagery and typography: Visual elements are essential components of your brand identity. From the images you choose to the typography you use, each element should be thoughtfully selected to create a cohesive and visually appealing brand identity.
Brand messaging: Brand messaging refers to the words and phrases that you use to communicate your brand’s value to your audience. Your messaging should be clear, concise, and in line with your brand’s personality and values. It should also be consistent across all channels to build a strong and recognizable brand.
Best Brand DNA Examples
We are surrounded by some of the iconic brands that have mastered their unique Brand DNA. But to name a few we have found some brands that truly thought out of the box.
Companies like Xerox and Google are the best Brand DNA examples as they have almost become synonyms in their field. You no longer say ‘search for it’, the statement has now become ‘Google it’. Their marketing and dominance in the search engine industry are deeply rooted in their tone, voice and logo design guidelines. Same for Xerox, the company was founded in 1906, and since then they have almost created a monopoly in the market with its power over brand messaging.
Another great example would be KFC. After Mcdonald’s began to do well in India in 1993, KFC set up shop in 1995. The expected competition took over but KFC managed to win hearts with its amazing brand guidelines and correct messaging and tone. They knew burgers were dominated by Mcdonald’s so their advertising revolved around the ancient Fried chicken of Colonel Sanders and his 11 special herbs. Touching these emotions, they made their Brand name and it still stands tall and strong today.
Benefits of Best Brand Guidelines:
A key benefit of brand guidelines is the ability to ensure consistency in messaging and visuals across all marketing and communication channels. This consistency reinforces your brand’s identity and helps establish trust with your audience.
By consistently using your brand’s colors, logo design guidelines and imagery. Soon your audience will begin to recognize and associate them with your brand.
When customers feel a strong emotional connection to it, they are more likely to remain loyal and continue to do business with you. Customers who trust and relate to your brand are more likely to recommend your business to others, and this can lead to increased revenue.
Also, with a clear set of guidelines to follow, marketing teams can create effective campaigns that align with your brand’s identity without wasting time on trial and error. This helps to ensure that your messaging is always on point and that your brand’s identity is maintained across all channels.
To wrap it up, having a clear brand DNA and the best brand guidelines is like having a GPS for your business’s identity. It helps keep you on track, so you don’t get lost in a sea of competition. Remember, consistent messaging and visuals, improved brand recognition, and increased loyalty are just a few of the benefits of having strong brand guidelines. So, let’s get cracking and create some guidelines that are “brand-tastic”!