Does Your Small Business Have a Brand Guide? The FIVE Reasons why you should.
When starting a small business, it’s easy for you to have the mentality of “jumping right in.” You want to complete and do everything to feel like you are up and running as quickly as possible. While doing all of these things can be an important factor in becoming visible to potential customers, what is more important is slowing down to ensure you are creating a branding guide for your small business. This task is often a task that is skipped and looked over. A branding guide should be the base of your business, and you can create around this guide. This step can be a step that small businesses skip, but if you take the time to complete this in the beginning, you can find yourself more successful in the long term. Here are the top 5 reasons your small business should have a branding guide.
Having an established brand guide can create consistency with your online presence. Showing up consistently in front of your audience can show your audience and customers that you are committed to your brand and small business. Every time a customer or potential customer visits your website, comes across your business card or even scrolls your social media platforms, they are consuming your brand on top of everything else they consume on a daily basis. Showing consistency in your brand will make it more recognizable over time with your viewers. With the digital world being so saturated with influencers, other small businesses, and the daily life of friends and family, consistency will set your business apart from others.
A brand guide can contain some of the following elements, Logo, Color Palette Logo Standards, etc. This can set the standards for how your brand should be presented in all aspects of your business, whether that be digitally or in print. It might seem silly to think that you shouldn’t use extra colors or even fonts in your online presence, but even the slightest change in your brand can change how your brand is viewed by your customers. Setting standards can be a game-changer.
Keeping your brand consistent can ensure that your brand is more recognizable by your customers. Some of the most popular brands have shown consistency in their brands over their lifetime and can now say they are recognizable to just about anyone. Some examples of brand consistency include Target, Microsoft, Starbucks, and even Google. Target is universally known in my own household, with my toddler, as the “Red Store.” They consistently use the same color, red, in ALL of their stores, branding, and digital footprint. It is so consistent that my three-year-old has already put the puzzle pieces together, and when I say we are going to the “Red Store,” she automatically knows we are taking a trip to Target. Having a branding guide that you continuously follow will help your brand stay consistent, which will, in the end, lead to being recognizable.
When you get your business up and rolling, it can be easy to get distracted with product launches, new services, or the day-to-day of what it takes to run a business. This can easily stretch a brand too thin. A brand guide that is clearly laid out can help a business owner and all of their employees stay focused on what is important. Staying focused during times that seem to be stretching your brand thin can create value for your brand.
Adding Value to Your Brand
Brand consistency over time can create brand value. Customers and consumers will continue to purchase and re-use products that they see or find value in. If your brand is consistent and recognizable, over time, you will create brand value. The value will create lifelong customers.