One of the most important things to recognize when you’ve invested time and effort developing your brand, is consistency. Keeping everything, you do - all of the different ways you use your logo or identity - within carefully created branding guidelines adds true value to your identity and message.
A really good logo suggests that your business knows exactly what it is doing and can be trusted and relied on - and people will tend to take more notice of it as it’ll become so familiar. Brand awareness is really important - but what exactly does that phrase ‘branding guidelines’ mean?
When you’re considering your new company logo, you should definitely go for something which somehow echoes what you want to say about your organization. It could take a lot of thought to get it right, but it would be time and effort well spent.
Think about your favorite logos, or the ones you can instantly call to mind. Amongst them will probably be McDonalds, Coca-Cola, BMW, Apple, FedEx, Google, Starbucks, Amazon, Reese’s, Nike, Budweiser, Star Wars, The Simpsons, MTV, The Rolling Stones, RUN DMC, KISS and so on… All of them are instantly recognizable, whether they are font-based (Star Wars and Google), a little more designed but still containing an element of text (Coca-Cola) or wholly graphic (The Rolling Stones famous ‘lips and tongue’).
Making sure you have a logo which reflects your brand in some way is really important. Imagine a company as high-end and aspirational as Porsche pushing out products emblazoned with a logo in the style of McDonalds’ famous arches, or vice-versa. A complete mismatch. The values of each brand are well served by their logos, and both logos are good – but almost certainly only in the context of the specific job they were created to do.
The McDonald’s logo is a great example of something graphic and instantly recognizable becoming a beacon for the company’s products. When you see that logo amidst others you instantly know exactly what it means, and what you can get from the building beneath it. It stands out and draws you in through the restaurant doors. Similarly, the Rolling Stones’ logo is almost as if the band has been encapsulated in graphic form. It’s fun and cartoonish. A larger than life and not so serious representation of the thing it’s selling. A shorthand way of cheekily pushing the band’s raw, sexual, and hedonistic qualities.
Other brands opt for more text-based logos, which can work equally as well as anything graphic. Google, for example, is text-based and uses a fairly standard font – but the twist, the thing that makes the logo instantly recognizable, is the clever use of color.
Although the use of color in a logo can be a solely aesthetic choice, there is also a deeper psychological connection with the consumer, which means palette is always worth considering carefully. When you choose your brand's color, you're also picking an association with the emotions that colour evokes. So, your brand’s relationship to color is another way of transmitting your message.
Yellow suggests optimism and cheerfulness, orange represents joy, confidence and friendship, red is bold and exciting, purple is for creativity and wisdom, blue means trust, strength and class, green is peaceful, healthy, and natural. Each of these colors (or shades of each) can be employed to do some of the heavy lifting during the process of setting up your brand identity. Or you could choose to ditch color altogether. Opting for, say, simple black or white text in a crisp and simple ‘classy’ font suggests your brand has a totally no-nonsense approach – credible, capable, and professional.
Developing a strong set of branding guidelines means being aware of your target market and taking control over the complete sum of what you ‘put out’ into the world to represent your business or organization to them. With care over the exact details of everything from your e-mail signatures to your stationery and store signs - and beyond - branding guidelines are the ‘exact rules’ of how things are to be presented.
This could mean, for example, the size and positioning of your logo on documentation or in advertising, or it could mean the type of font used in emails to customers or in advertising campaigns. It could mean that your brand would never use certain words in advertising, or always uses certain words in advertising. It could mean your company logo must never appear on clothing, or it could mean that your company logo must always be central on polo shirts rather than off to one side.
Branding for business guidelines tend to feature details / instructions about every aspect of your logo and anything associated with it: Exact pantone color code, sizing (in different contexts), text kerning, logo positioning – almost any aspect of anything visual or communicative that you can think of. Absolutely everything is up for grabs, equally important in creating your company image and maintaining it. Consistency is key. Although it’s possible to project a great company image without getting into obsessive territory in terms of branding details, and being a little more relaxed about it, the truth is that the very best brands are extremely careful about their representation and absolutely zealous in protecting it.
When you’re busy merchandising for your business and choosing items for branding from EverythingBranded, it’s worth considering things like the color. If your company’s main color is pink, make sure to check the item you want is available in that color. No point getting green pens if you want pink! Well, there is a point – your logo will still make it out there. But how much better would it feel to the consumer if you just took a little bit more time to think about ‘matching up’ to your brand? Similarly, do the promotional items you’re thinking of investing in fall within your product branding guidelines? No point in opting for shaped novelty pens if your business is incredibly fussy about presentation and maintaining a serious image.
Whatever the product you are looking for, and whatever color, size, or shape, at EverythingBranded we’re confident we stock something to suit your marketing needs and keep you within your branding guidelines. For further enquiries, or to generate a quote, contact our team today.