It’s hard to stay organised and you find yourself using random fonts or picking ‘close enough’ colours and random elements off Canva, and your brand just ends up a bit messy.

Well this is the case of the inconsistent mess. If you are struggling with this, you might being seeing one or more of these:

  • An inconsistent use of colours, that makes it unclear what your brand colours even are
  • You have to scramble around and use the eyedropper tool to track down your brand colours.
  • You chop and change the fonts you use all the time
  • Your graphics don’t really feel like they are all part of the same brand, it feels a bit of a mess
  • You often feel like you are starting from scratch anytime you design anything for your business.

So if this sounds like you, you are probably seeing this evidence:

  • Your branding isn’t recognisable or memorable
  • Designing always takes you a long time to get done

So to solve this  you need to create a very important document that will outline all your rand elements and how they are to be used

This is called your brand style guide.

The purpose of a brand style guide is to ensure consistency in the use of brand elements across every touch point and every interaction with your brand including social media, advertising, website, packaging, client/customer journey and marketing collateral.

It keeps your brand consistent and makes it easier to create graphics and hire other people to work on brand projects as everyone is clear about the brand style and the rules for applying the brand elements in a design. It gives you an easy to reference and share document. Creating your brand guide is also an opportunity to review all the brand elements you have created, make sure they all work together cohesively and how they work together to create graphics. It is a good chance to notice if anything need tweaking, removing or if there is something extra you need to add.

Inside you will find your fonts, your colour palette, mood board, logo and logo variations, all your brand elements and your brand voice. You may also want to include things like packaging, business cards, web guidelines, mockups and a few decorative pages to show off your branding.

Now if that seems like a big and overwhelming project right now. Start with a simple brand board to get you started and create a few graphic templates so you begin to build some consistency and speed up your design process.

It’s a simple single page (or if you have a lot of brand elements you can use a few pages) that lays out all your brand elements. It is basically a quick reference guide, so you can easily look at and see all your brand elements and what you need to use every time you design anything for your brand. And if you use Canva Pro you can also set up a Brand Kit, where you can upload all your brand assets and then easily grab them as you design.

Once you have this set up use it to guide you as you make some base templates. Think about what graphics you design a lot in your business, like Pinterest pins or instagram posts or reel covers and create your own on brand template set that you can use. This will save you a lot of time in the long run and speeds up your design process when you need to quickly whip up a graphic. Plus it helps you make sure you stay consistent with your brand style.

Case in summary: Start with a simple brand board to get clear on what brand elements you have then as you get time begin to work on a bigger style guide, to give more accurate guidelines on how all your brand elements should be used.

let's chat

I'd love to hear from you

Come join me on Instagram to chat more about this! You can comment on a post or send me a DM and let me know your thoughts or ask a question.