FAQs about brand guidelines

Why are brand guidelines important?

Because brand guidelines contain the formal identity of a business, they are considered an intangible yet highly valuable asset. This is why brand consistency is so crucial across all platforms that a business operates on and communicates through. Having established brand guidelines can give a business clear rules and guidelines to help promote coherence about the brand. This can also add value to the company through an improved and strong reputation. Furthermore, brand guidelines, which are implemented on a consistent basis, will help a brand to be more recognisable and maintain focus on its core principles.


How should brand guidelines for a franchise be developed?

There are four main steps involved when a franchise wishes to develop brand guidelines.

The first step in developing franchise brand guidelines is to clarify your brand essence. This will mean knowing what you stand for, knowing what you want to communicate to the world as well as how you plan to do so. 

The second step to creating brand guidelines involves developing your brand’s rules. This will mean addressing aspects such as logo usage, typography, illustrations, icons, colour, grids and white spaces. 

As the third step, you will next need to train your staff on the correct way to use your brand guidelines. The same may hold true for external stakeholders. 

The fourth and final step is to be ready for continuous development of your brand as you plan for growth and change. This will differ for every franchise business because each one is on its own individual journey forward.


What should brand guidelines include?

There are numerous brand guideline examples of both what works and what hasn’t worked for franchise companies in the past. However, a few of the elements that successful franchise brands have in common include but are not limited to the following: brand story, logo guidelines, brand colour palette, typography and font guidelines, image guidelines and brand voice; as well as its mission, vision, values and history. Once all of these have been defined, a franchise will be better positioned to improve its communication of what it is and what it isn’t.


How should brand guidelines be enforced?

You may have spent a considerable amount of time developing your brand guidelines, only now to be faced with the task of their implementation. As a rule, implementing brand guidelines should always begin by clearly introducing them to the relevant teams in your organisation. Every team member who is a touchpoint for the brand should have easy access to the newly-developed brand guidelines. These should also be widely available throughout the organisation. Once the relevant parties have the necessary access, you need to communicate the importance of enforcing the brand guidelines on a consistent basis. You can also ensure that the brand guidelines and their rules are spread out with the help of visual aids such as posters.


What is the difference between brand guidelines and a brand book?

Although there are not many differences between brand guidelines and a brand book and these terms are often used interchangeably, it’s important to note that a brand book also contains the history and discussions that have led to the development of the brand guidelines, whereas the brand guidelines are a more technical aid for orientation, design, copy, communication and public relations purposes, amongst others.

Other frequently confused terms are brand guidelines and style guides. However, it must be noted that the latter frequently refer to the tone of voice that the company wishes to use in its communication strategy and is more targeted at writers. Brand guidelines. more often than not relate to the visual identity of the brand, which is present in its logos, website design, pamphlets, clothing, stationery and other materials.


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