The Goal of Brand Guidelines
by Ian Linton
Measurable Goals for Brand Awareness
The goal of brand guidelines is to protect the strength
of your brand so that it continues to create value for
your company. Brand guidelines achieve this by
explaining the importance of your brand and
describing how to use the elements of the brand, such
as corporate identity and the brand name. Your brand guidelines should provide a comprehensive manual for anyone who uses your brand and its components in their work, including employees, channel partners, designers and marketing agencies
Your brand is one of your most important assets. It is essential that everyone understands the value of the brand and knows how to use it. A 2005 study by consultants Booz Allen Hamilton and Wolff Olins found that brand-guided companies outperform their competitors, with results that improve profitability.
Brand guidelines operate at two levels: they explain why your employees, distributors and marketing agencies should use the brand to achieve business objectives and they provide practical instructions on how to use brand elements consistently. According to control manufacturer Honeywell, every employee is an ambassador for the company’s brand. Brand guidelines explain how employees can reflect brand values, such as customer focus, innovation or leadership, in the way they deal with customers.
A key goal of brand guidelines is to ensure that all parties use the brand elements consistently. Brand guidelines provide information and tools and set the standards for using brand names, logos, typefaces and other design elements in advertisements, brochures, newsletters, packaging and online communications. Guidelines give your company control over the way other people use your brand so that its visual appearance is always consistent.
You can use brand guidelines to demonstrate the relationship between your company and other parties associated with you. If you operate a network of distributors, provide them with guidelines on using your brand as part of their identity. Cisco distribution partners, for example, are a group of distributors that consistently achieve standards set by the network company Cisco. They use Cisco identity to differentiate themselves from other distributors; Cisco benefits by extending its brand consistently to other parties.
Brand guidelines play an important role in managing perceptions of your company. Every time you communicate with customers, suppliers, employees, investors, journalists and the community, it is essential to build and reinforce a consistent perception of your company. Brand guidelines help you to achieve that goal.
About Ian Linton, the author
Based in the United Kingdom, Ian Linton has been a professional writer since 1990. His articles on marketing, technology and distance running have appeared in magazines such as “Marketing” and “Runner's World.” Linton has also authored more than 20 published books and is a copywriter for global companies. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in history and economics from Bristol University.
The Importance of
by Neil Kokemuller
A brand is the meaning behind your company's name, logo, symbols and slogans. Having a unique and memorable brand helps you build
brand awareness and create a long-term position in the marketplace.
Brand awareness is a measure of how well your brand is known within its target markets.
Creating brand awareness is usually
the first step in building advertising
objectives. Before you can create a
favorable impression or motivate
customers to buy, they have to
become aware of your brand and its
meaning. Marketing messages
delivered through various media are
often used to communicate the brand
name and important messages tied to
its products. Making people aware
that you exist helps drive traffic to
your business and create a buzz in the market.
Top of Mind
The highest level of brand awareness is top of mind awareness. This is when customers think of you first when they need to make a purchase within your product category. You can build top of mind awareness through repeated exposure and consistent delivery of a good product or service over time. This is a huge advantage in the market when customers enter a buying situation and your brand immediately comes to mind first.
Equity is the value of your brand beyond your physical assets like buildings and equipment. To develop a strong brand equity you have to develop a high level of brand awareness. The more people are aware of you and the stronger your reputation, the greater your profit potential and overall brand value. Word of mouth in the market plays a strong role in helping your brand grow its customer base and develop loyal relationships with top customers.
The importance of brand awareness has become increasingly significant with the evolution of the Internet and digital technology. The public is more equipped with mobile and social media tools to communicate quickly about your brand -- good or bad. This means that establishing a strong reputation for good products or services, integrity in your business practices and community involvement are even more critical to long-term success.
About the Author
Neil Kokemuller has been an active business, finance and education writer and content media website developer since 2007. He has been a college marketing professor since 2004. Kokemuller has additional professional experience in marketing, retail and small business. He holds a Master of Business Administration from Iowa State University.