The Brand Consistency discussion – a case for brand guidelines
Brand guidelines are put in place by brand creators in order to make the representation of the brand in almost every instant as accurate and consistent as possible.
However, as trends emerge and technology induces some subtle and some not – changes in the way communication is handled, the question of whether the brand guidelines are safe guarding the brand or simply making it dreary begins to surface – a lot.
The purpose of brand guidelines is to ensure:
- Brand visibility
- Increased brand visibility needs to go hand in hand with a standards measure stick that prevents the erosion of said brand.
- Brand awareness
- Unfortunately, many Companies do not view their brand as an asset. If they did, they would invest time and money in its development and maintenance as they do on the physical assets.
- As a result, of Companies not taking their brands seriously, there is a deficit in public awareness that would otherwise not be there if it was structured into their marketing planning.
- Brand preference
- With a high level of brand awareness, trust and top level information is generated in the mind of a customer and this affects choice and preference levels.
- This is dependent on the product/ service meeting the needs of the customer or meeting its quality and value balance as per the brand promise.
- Brand advocacy
- This is the ideal goal. The point at which the brand sells itself with minimum effort from your marketing and sales campaigns.
- This is the point at which your brand is so well known, people automatically pick it off the shelves.
Target audiences are drawn to consistency, so though using the same elements time and time again may seem dull to directors and internal stakeholders, it will ultimately help identify your brand more quickly and hopefully start building an emotional attachment to your company.
Small changes to the brand look and feel must be made deliberately and not on a whim with considerations that these changes will need to be factored into the brand on the long term.