How to Write a Style Guide for Your Brand

How to Write a Style Guide for Your Brand

How to Write a Style Guide for Your Brand. One way to foster authenticity is by achieving consistent communication and branding by creating a style guide containing instructions for all parties creating content for your company. This article addresses why your organization needs a style guide, details what to include in your style guide, and gives examples of top-notch style guides to ensure streamlined external communications. Why you need a style guide First, what is a brand style guide? It references grammar, tone, logo usage, colors, visuals, word usage, point of view, and more. By creating a complete brand style guide, you ensure that your published content is consistent, polished, recognizable, and more enjoyable. Next create a section on how your brand talks and writes, and another section on branded visuals. Additional details: Include a section on how to engage, words to stay away from, and any other details that are important to your brand. Brands with awesome style guides Here’s a list of brands we all know that have first-class style guides, and what makes them special. Uber From the start of Uber’s style guide, you get the idea of what the company is all about: moving things.

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Sometimes branding fails are caused by something getting lost in translation. For example, when Coors translated its slogan, “Turn It Loose,” into Spanish, it used a colloquial term for diarrhea.

More often, though, branding fails happen because of a lack of a clear style guide, which can result in inconsistency or miscommunication among your content team.

Pardot research notes that 80% of consumers say “authenticity of content” is the most influential factor in their decision to become a follower of a brand. One way to foster authenticity is by achieving consistent communication and branding by creating a style guide containing instructions for all parties creating content for your company.

This article addresses why your organization needs a style guide, details what to include in your style guide, and gives examples of top-notch style guides to ensure streamlined external communications.

Why you need a style guide

First, what is a brand style guide?

A brand style guide is a holistic set of standards that defines your company’s branding. It references grammar, tone, logo usage, colors, visuals, word usage, point of view, and more.

By creating a complete brand style guide, you ensure that your published content is consistent, polished, recognizable, and more enjoyable. A thorough, well-thought-out style guide puts your readers first. It creates a recognizable, engaging voice and personality that readers can form a more personal connection with.

What to include in your style guide

GatherContent recommends keeping a style guide to between four and five pages. Anything longer is too much to digest. Before creating a style guide, research who your audience is and what they want. Create a style guide based on what resonates with them.

If you already have a mission statement or boilerplate “About Us” description for your brand, start there. Revisit it and make sure it’s not only on point with what it says but how it says it. If you’re defining your brand voice as conversational, but your mission statement is filled with corporate jargon, it’s probably worth revisiting.

From there, create a table of contents for your style guide and use it as an outline. All style guides should include an introduction. This might include a mission statement, letter from the CEO, About Us page, or general overview of the company’s brand and audience. Next create a section on how your brand talks and writes, and another section on branded visuals. Here’s a breakdown of what these sections should include.

Writing section

Roughly 45% of a brand’s image can be attributed to what a brand says and how it says it. Details like whether to use “&” or “and,” or if you should use the numerical or written-out versions of numbers may seem trivial. But the sum total of these details adds up. If they are consistent throughout your published work, they convey a coherent voice, coherent thinking, and a credibility impossible to attain without this consistency. Here are some tips for ensuring that your brand guide…

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