Making IT Work for you… using technology to support your brand
Your brand communicates something unique to prospects and customers. This could be trust, reliability, honesty, great personal service or that you use only natural ingredients. The brand helps turn one-off customers into loyal customers, who always buy from you first. Technology can help support your brand, by communicating logo, colours and text in a consistent way.
A one-person business or a small business can have a brand. You don’t need to be a major airline or skincare manufacturer to have a brand! The first task is to create a brand ‘style guide’. This is usually a one or two page document that contains – your logo in different sizes and uses; text – where it should appear in relation to the logo, and what font to use for your ‘strapline’; colour, size and font of text that appears in printed material. Also you may wish to include other supporting colours, and make sure that you include the ‘RGB’ values as well as the ‘#’ hash values for use on the web. Another useful thing to do on the style guide, is to put a section of text, which uses a heading, a paragraph of text, and some background colour as an example use of your brand.
With your brand style guide, take a look at your website – does it exactly match your brand style guide? Do your flyers look instantly recognisable as being from your business? Someone once suggested to me to look at flyers and posters upside down, and if you recognise the logo, colours and the layout looks good, then when the right way up, the flyer should be quite effective.
For electronic documents, create templates, which enforce your brand whenever you create a proposal, quote, report and invoice. All should be instantly recognisable as being from your business. And finally, live up to your brand – make sure that everything that you do is honest to your brand.