How to Ensure Brand Consistency and Why It Matters

March 4, 2024 | Branding and Rebranding, Positioning and Messaging

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The key to developing a good brand with widespread recognition is consistency. But how do you ensure brand consistency and why is it so important?

A brand isn’t just something you have on file. Your brand gets developed and strengthened the more you use it. Every email, social media post, press release, and ad that goes out is another impression of your brand. But are you showing, and saying, the same thing every time?

Read on to learn more about brand consistency, why it’s crucial to brand visibility, and how to ensure brand consistency.

What does brand consistency mean?

Brand consistency means using the same design and messaging elements every time you try to increase brand recognition, attract prospects, and convert customers.

Visual brand consistency

From a designer’s perspective, brand consistency means:

  • Use the same business name, logo, and/or logotype. Typesetting the name and other elements in a fixed fashion.
  • Choose a couple of typefaces and use them all the time. Read these tips about working with fonts.
  • Choose a corporate color, or color palette and using them as the dominant color scheme throughout your materials—printed or online.
  • Use consistent visual elements across media. Some examples are: always using a certain style of photography; or always setting quotations in Garamond Italic; or always have one large color block at the top of the page.
  • Create “lock ups” for your elements. This means, for example, a certain way of setting the logo + tagline. These groupings become fixed.
  • Create design systems that are similar throughout all of your materials. From a business card to a web site to an educational brochure, there should be certain elements that are always the same.

Brand consistency in messaging

Your messaging —the words you use and how you use them— is equally important when it comes to brand consistency.

From a writer’s perspective, brand consistency means:

  • Establish grammar and punctuation guidelines. Do you use sentence or title case for blog titles and headers? Do you use the Oxford comma, or not?
  • Write with the same voice. Is your brand formal, or informal? Do you opt for more of a friendly, or informative tone?
  • Standardize brand and product names. This seems trivial, but brands often have standards for writing their name. For example, ClickUp should always be written with a capital C and U. Clickup would be unacceptable.
  • Decide how to treat industry-specific terms. Are acronyms written out? Are technical terms defined?
  • Establish one or two tag lines. These are short, benefit-driven phrases that will show up a lot in your marketing collateral.

Why is brand consistency important?

There’s an old adage in branding that it takes the average user 5-7 consistent impressions to actually remember a brand. That’s 5-7 emails, social media posts, visits to a website etc.

In fact, it’s very hard to measure this and some experts put it has high as 8 or even 13 brand touch points. As people get overloaded with media and their attention span shortens, this number will continue to grow.

The important thing to remember is, those impressions need to be consistent in order for someone to remember who you are.

Avoid confusion

The obvious reason is that your potential clients and customers are being introduced to you and you don’t want to confuse them. As a small business, (in contrast to a well-known multi-national corporation) make it easy for someone to remember you by being consistent with how you present yourself.

People take notice of certain elements, but can’t always remember all the details.

For example, you meet a potential client at a networking event and give them your business card which features a large, red, circular logo. A few weeks later, that person is thinking they may need your services so they google your name and go to your website. If they see a large, red, circular logo they feel confident that they’re at the right place. If, on your web site you show your logo (even the same graphic) in green, they will feel confused and question whether this is indeed the same person and company they had in mind.

People trust things that they know

The first example highlights the most basic type of confusion that can cost you sales. But often it’s more subtle than that. Every time a potential client hears your business name or sees your logo it gets registered, even slightly, in their memory.

The stronger a memory—and therefore connection—someone has to a brand, the more likely they are to buy from that brand. Consumers are more likely to choose brands that are familiar, because they seem known, established, and therefore trustworthy.

It makes business sense—increase your returns

Often, business owners make their corporate identity inconsistent without giving it much thought. One example is an entrepreneur who decides to hire a web development firm to create their web site and another design studio for their printed work, without having the two end products coordinated.

In this example, you’ve paid for two projects but rather than having those two pieces compounding your brand and building them exponentially, you may end up with two unmatched or poorly matched marketing tools. Therefore, the two pieces are not as effective in building brand recognition as one coordinated effort.

How to ensure brand consistency

Ensuring brand consistency starts with getting everyone on the same page about your brand. This includes any internal stakeholders, your marketing partners, and any contractors you may work with.

Establish a brand guide

A brand guide is one place that houses all of your branding guidelines. This includes any visual elements, including high quality files of your logo, directions for font usage, and color codes for your brand colors.

You should also develop a voice and tone guide. This is a document that outlines all of your grammar guidelines, brand and product name norms, and details about your brand voice.

Communicate your brand guide

A brand guide should be communicated early, and should be easily accessible to anyone working on your branding and marketing. Share the guide with contractors, internally, your marketing partners, and with any other brand you are partnering with.

Create branded templates

Templates are an easy way to ensure brand consistency. You can create a handful of templates for social media posts, that way your social media pages are consistently branded. You can create templates for presentations, proposals, emails, or any other kind of collateral that you create often.

Use branded assets for internal communication

One of the best ways to ensure brand consistency is to get buy-in from everyone in your company. Use branded assets, like branded PowerPoint presentations, for all internal communication. This helps reinforce the importance of your brand.

Brand consistency exponentially increases the effectiveness of your brand. For businesses that are reorganizing, experiencing high growth, or adding product lines, bringing together a consistent brand can be complex and time consuming.

With other 20 years of branding and marketing experience, Visible Logic can help you create a brand that leaves an impact, and use that brand efficiently and consistently. If you’re ready to level up your brand, talk to us.



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