Consistent branding is essential for instant recognition. With all the noise on the internet, wouldn’t it be nice if your brand was highly recognizable and impossible to miss?
Staying consistent means higher click-through rates across channels. Once people start to connect the dots between valuable content and your brand , you can keep them coming back by staying consistent. Having a recognizable brand may seem easy, but it’s actually a big challenge.
Design plays a tremendous role in consistent branding. Here’s 4 key ways to keep your brand’s design consistent.
1. Narrow Your Niche
Working off your brand’s vision, establish a design scheme that complements it. Choose what type of imagery you’ll use, such as high-quality photography or illustrations. And always be sure to limit your color and font palette. If you start to go overboard, the design will lose its direction. Don’t complicate your brand with indecisive design.
Below is a CTA static image for a Cubicle Ninjas campaign. The tone of copy, image, and color palette fit tightly within our branding scheme.
If you compare the CTA’s design to some of Cubicle Ninjas’ other marketing materials, you’ll start to see a pattern. This narrow focus makes for a powerful, recognizable brand.
2. Train your Team
Think of everyone who is in charge of handling your brand, such as the web designers, the marketing coordinator, and even you! Each team member has a powerful impact on your brand. But what about others who also have an influence?
Think about the sales people, project managers, and even the folks at your front desk — all of them have the power to change how others view your organization. Understanding your unique design is not just the concern of the creative team or upper management. Empowering everyone with the right information and tools allows them to participate effectively. Everyone should be on board, from the web designer to the HR pro.
3. Everything Needs a Design Review
Your website is your backbone. Everything else should reflect back to the site. Think beyond your Twitter background, website design, and eBooks. What about the way you present your pitch, a proposal, or even videos? Have they undergone a strict brand review?
Many of the smaller projects are sent off to different departments or to a designer without proper branding guidelines. These small pieces matter. When a proposal is as beautiful as the marketing materials you use, it shows your brand goes beyond just a first impression.
Presentations on SlideShare are a great example. When you upload presentations, the goal is to spread brand awareness. If someone who knew our brand was going through recent uploads, they’d likely recognize our presentation at first glance. Notice how the font used in the presentation below matches our branding examples above.[slideshare id=24953141&doc=cndosanddontsofpresentations-130805155335-phpapp01]
4. Work With a Design Partner
You’re great at what you do. But building a consistent, cohesive brand is a full-time job. Working with an outside team of designers who are trained to know branding – and will help you stay consistent – is a gift that will save you time and money.
Here’s what other brands have to say about working with a design partner:
Natalie Rockefeller Lane of BlueGrace Logistics mentioned how important it is to hire an in-house designer, or only one firm to do your designs: “The less hands on design, the better”.
Nidhima, CEO of My Beauty Matches stated how important it is to hire a UX designer to keep the brand consistent, not only for the site, but for multiple social media platforms. Kohli wanted to ensure the color layout from the site stayed consistent across social media and email marketing design.
And Nikki J. Means of Project Socialize noted, “Hire a designer. Each business has its area of specialty, and unless you are a graphic or digital designer your expertise is not design. Incorporating a graphic design employee or consultant into your marketing budget ensures that your visual content is creative, compelling and crisp.”
The best part about working with a design partner is after the first few projects, the planning and execution becomes better, faster, stronger. Now I know what Daft Punk was talking about. Have you noticed they never take off their helmets? That’s brand consistency.
What are some ways you keep your branding consistent across channels? If you need a bit of extra help, our team can steer you in the right direction. Talk to a ninja today!