A company’s brand is often more important than the products that it sells. But what is a brand? In fact, it is a name, design, symbol or collection of several elements that distinguishes a product or service from other sellers.
What is a Brand Book?
A brand book underlines every strong company and self-respecting brand and often reveals insider details, marketing goals, and methods. After developing all these rules, you need to make sure that they are respected and adhered to. If you do not use and do not apply the rules of the brand, there is a risk to spend all the time and efforts that you invested in developing a corporate identity and a brand book for nothing.
Therefore, you need to make sure that all employees are aware of the existence of this document. For example, developers do not directly participate in making decisions about branding, but they may face some errors during the implementation of a new design project or when developing a site.
The Components of a Brand Book
The company’s brand book usually includes a mission statement, values, and characteristics of the target audience of the brand. It can be short or long, depending on how thorough the guidance should be.
A brand book consists of:
- recommendations on the use of identity;
- ways of communication;
- other nuances that management believes require special attention.
Provides tips for using visual elements:
- brand book logo: color, layout, options, size and proportions, examples of misuse of the logo;
- branded color: the main colors of the brand, as well as secondary colors, when and where to use them;
- typography: which corporate fonts for headings and texts should be used;
- photos: photo style, image recommendations;
- other graphic elements: icons, patterns, textures.
Recommends the means of communication:
- in which languages does the brand communicate;
- features of grammar and formatting: abbreviations, acronyms, verb tenses and titles;
- readability: the type of proposal construction;
- style: technical / non-technical; formal / casual / slang;
- character of communication and tone of voice: emotional, intimate, official / humorous;
- the structure of the electronic letter, the signature under it;
- communication in social media: types of messages, publication time.
Why Do I Need a Brand Book?
How will you react if you see the Apple logo in purple, or the McDonald arches in pink instead of gold? Brand style guides help to maintain a consistent appearance so consumers and employees understand that it is a serious brand. These guidelines help to create uniform brand elements whether in China or Peru. The brand guides should be easy to read and understand, paying special attention to important parts of the brand.
The brand books of well-known companies describe in detail the use of each element of identity, containing vivid examples and colorful photos.
Skype’s Brand Book
Skype knows how to develop a brand book so it would be modern and understandable to everyone. The Skype style guide explains absolutely all the nuances of using brand elements, from their well-known blue-and-white logo to fonts. The manual even details how to use speech bubbles in printed and online materials!
What is Skype: According to the creators, Skype is software that allows people all over the world to talk to each other for free. “Skype is made for people. We provide an opportunity for people to talk with each other and with the whole world for free.”
It does not matter where you are – you can call via Skype, mobile or landline.
The term “Skype” is an acronym for the expression “Sky peer to peer,” which in translation means “In the sky with each other.” Originally, the name was “Skyper,” but the last letter was removed, making the title more believable.
Skype’s mission is described in the firm’s interactive company clouds:
- To give the whole world the ability to make beautiful and free calls.
- Find people who pay for such basic things as talking or coping with the need, and give them a kick.
- Share! We exist for this purpose.
- Say “hello” to strangers at least once a day (even if they look unhappy).
- Make things easier and easier, because there are enough useless buttons in the world.
Brand book for the Skype logo: you can only set the logo on a white or blue background. Photos or bright colors on the background of the logo, shadow or writing the logo at an angle are prohibited.
A brand book is the main book of any self-respecting company. It saves time for designers when transferring the logo to a new format and calms nerves when choosing a color palette of corporate clothing. This is a book that every new employee reads to learn the company’s core values to share with customers.
Mariia Hepalova is a content writer on DesignContest.com. She has written for various online publications and blogs. With an equal passion for both design and marketing, she strives to produce content that is informative yet easy to understand.