Brands are everywhere in our lives. From your morning coffee to the TV commercials you watch before bed, you see thousands of brands. Brands have a lot of power that can trigger feelings, make impressions, and convey messages. Brands have become much more than a seal of quality. They have become an asset that is central to any business' identity.
Understand Your Brand Identity:
A brand is a powerful tool and it is important to understand how you want to shape your brand before you begin crafting a branding guide. One of my favorite exercises to help develop a brand identity is to think of my product or business as a person. What would my brand look like if it was an individual? What would it do? What would it wear? Ask yourself questions that help to shape an identity and something tangible in your mind that you can think back to when making design decisions. They more you are in touch with your brand and what you want it to represent the easier it will be to develop a meaningful design.
Picking A Name:
One of the most important aspects of designing a brand is picking the perfect name. A name is one of the most visible aspects of your brand and it is the first aspect of your brand that customers encounter. A lot of information can be conveyed in a name so make yours memorable. Make sure that the trademark for your brand is available and that you can secure it. An optional but important tip is to check if website domains and social media handles for your brand are available. These digital assets are very important to building an online presence especially for eCommerce brand.
Picking Your Color Scheme:
Keep your brands colors consistent. You want to select both primary and secondary color that help convey your brands identity. Once you identify the colors that help you tell your story, record your HEX, RGB and CMYK values. This will ensure that regardless where you showcase your brand, your identity will stay consistent.
Picking Your Typography:
There are thousands of fonts available for use, but pick one that represents your brand. What do you want to convey with your font? Do you want to seem fun, cool, classic, trendy, fancy, etc. The options are endless. Don't forget to consider whether to use bold font, italics, or capitalization with your typography. Do you want a Sans Serif or a Serif font? Also consider font size when creating rules for your typography. It's easier to select an existing font design, but you can always customize and create your font. Remember that consistency is key in building a brand.
When designing a logo it is important to not just create something that is representative of your brand, but is also easily recognizable. Keep in mind both the color scheme and the typography from the previous sections to remain consistent. Often times businesses tend to overthink their logos. Sometimes simple logos can be just as effective as more complex ones. Consider where and when this logo should be used and if there are any color variations. Try creating a collage of stock photos or images of things that help build an emotional impression of your brand/logo. Finally consider trademarking your logo to help protect it.
Packaging and Product Design:
When using your brand on packaging and products, keep your design as consistent as possible. There are many companies who use packaging and design to further elevate their brand awareness. This is an effective way to enhance your brand and grow your brand equity in the market.