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Whether you’re building a new brand or simply refreshing an old one, your brand’s visual identity is the most important factor. Brands with a consistent visual identity resonate with their customers more effectively and get the added benefit of having to spend significantly less money in the long run on advertising and marketing materials. Brands with more scattered visual identities, on the other hand, have to spend more and more to get their brand in front of customers as it changes so frequently.

So how can you create a visual brand identity that will help your business in the long run? Simply follow these checklists and you’ll have an effective framework to build a visual brand identity that will last.

What Does My Visual Brand Identity Need?

Here is a simple list of items to include while building your brand’s visual identity:

Once you have these items, your brand’s visual identity should be fine. Anything above and beyond this is extra credit. Doing the above items well is the foundation of any branding work, but a lot of people focus on other items that may not be necessary for you.

What Does My Visual Brand Identity NOT Need?

If you’re looking for items that you can cut out of your brand’s visual identity system, it’s not hard. Take a look at examples of great brand identity guidelines and see what they omit. The following items aren’t meaningless. In fact, many brand’s visual identities hinge on these items, but if you’re looking to control costs or create a “Minimum Viable Brand Identity,” these items may prove unnecessary:

Once again, for some brands these items are necessary, but don’t treat them as necessities for your brand unless they make sense. If you don’t know the business purpose of these items, just skip them and focus your time and energy on the parts of branding that matter.

Now What Should I Do With My Visual Identity?

Once you’ve built a great brand identity, it’s your job to use it! Without effective implementation, a great brand means nothing. So what can you do to ensure that the rest of your company can embrace your brand?

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