Are you thinking of starting your new business? Whether it’s a beverage company, a home-grown spice mix brand, or even a new burger joint, it’s important to create an identity for your brand that is recognizable, relevant, and instantly connects with your target audience. With over a million brands walking in and out of the market, it is essential that you have a strong brand identity that distinguishes your brand from the market. In order to set your brand apart from your competitors, you should create a strong brand toolkit that can help you achieve these goals.
A brand toolkit, if created with the right combination of elements will become the bible of your brand. In simple words, a brand toolkit is just your brand playbook that has a collection of all your brand elements and components. In this blog, we are going to talk about what is a brand toolkit, what components can a brand toolkit include as a part of it, and lastly how you can create your own brand toolkit with our free template. So why wait? Let’s get started.
What is a brand toolkit?
Let me ask you a question, if you are starting your business or re-branding your current one, how would you like to represent your brand to your audience? In order to knock that one off, you need to invest in creating a brand toolkit. So what really is a brand toolkit?
It is simply your brand style guide or the rulebook that governs your brand. A brand toolkit usually consists of all visual and verbal elements that you want your brand to represent. It’s a document that outlines all the rules and regulations for using your brand elements across all your marketing and promotional materials, for both print and digital media.
A brand toolkit is also more commonly known as a marketing toolkit. The major purpose of a brand toolkit is to create brand consistency and coherence across all your branding efforts. To make your brand win, you should remember that your branding is consistent. Whether you have an in-house team of designers or external stakeholders, a brand toolkit can help in keeping your brand messaging, brand personality, and brand assets coherent. With a branding toolkit, you can clearly communicate your brand goals, build a strong brand image, and thereby increase your brand loyalty and trust.
Why is a brand toolkit important?
Before we jump into understanding the components of a brand toolkit, let’s understand why a brand toolkit is important. Let’s get started.
1. Increases brand consistency
A brand toolkit ensures that your brand is presented in a consistent manner across all your marketing channels, both print and digital media.
2. Establishes your brand identity
The most common advantage of using a brand toolkit is that it helps in establishing a clear and memorable brand image.
3. Saves resources
With a brand toolkit in place, you can save the time, effort, money, and resources spent on your members or even your third-party vendors. It can help teams to create brand resources in a quick and efficient manner.
4. Increases efficiency
Another popular advantage of a brand toolkit is to streamline the entire creative process in an easy way. You can even go a step ahead and create templates for your creatives and easily scale your creative process.
5. Increases productivity
With an entire brand rulebook right in front of your team, you can ensure that there is high-quality output produced by your team. With a brand toolkit, you can create visually appealing creatives and content that are on par with your brand, increasing the overall credibility of your brand.
6. Improves brand recognition
The end goal that every brand is trying to achieve is to become a recognizable brand that stays in the memory of your target audience.
7. Improves collaboration
As we mentioned earlier, having a brand toolkit will not just help you work with your third-party vendors easily but also can come in handy for different teams and departments within your organization. If you are looking for a better way to collaborate effectively within creative teams, check out Artwork Flow.
8. Supports brand equity
Brand equity simply means the overall value or worth of your brand. It is the value that your brand sets in the market for the product or service you are offering to your customers. With a strong brand toolkit, you can increase your overall brand equity and have a positive effect on customer loyalty and satisfaction.
What are the components you can include in your brand toolkit?
Just like how KFC’s original recipe distinguishes them from the rest, your brand toolkit is the secret weapon that sets you apart from your competitors. A brand toolkit includes all the brand resources and tools compiled to create an engaging and trustworthy brand. Let’s find out the different components in your brand toolkit.
The foundational component in your brand toolkit is your brand guidelines. These brand guidelines define the visual and verbal elements of your brand. They provide clear guidance to different internal and external teams to create any creative or content for your brand. The major elements that can be included in your brand guidelines include:
- Color palette
- Tone of voice
The list can keep going on but it’s important to create concise brand guidelines that grow as your brand evolves. Now let’s take a look at each of these important elements in brief.
The first way to make your brand recognizable is to create a stunning logo. It is important that you have different versions of your logo so it can work the same across different contexts. A high-color version of your logo for your website, a simple text logo for your letterhead and print material, and so on. When you create different variations of your logo, no matter what you are creating.
Colors are key to boosting your brand’s entire visual identity. A color palette is another important component of your brand toolkit. Colors can help in showcasing emotions and help people to connect with your brand even better. The colors you choose must reflect your brand’s personality. Understanding color theory is essential to help you choose the right colors. Color theory can help in picking the right set of colors that complement each other and create a sense of balance in your design. Once you fix on a color palette, it is easier to bring about more consistency in design.
As the name suggests, typography refers to the fonts and font types you use for your brand. Typography also plays a crucial role in setting up your brand personality and tone of voice. It is important to pick fonts that are legible and easily readable on different backgrounds by users. It can also create visual hierarchy, consistency, and help you draw attention to specific details mentioned in your creatives.
4. Tone of voice
In simple words, tone of voice refers to the way you want your brand to communicate with your audience through written content and messaging. The tone of voice should reflect your brand’s personality and values. You must look into smaller factors like the target audience and personality traits of your potential audience. The tone of voice must outline your brand’s key messaging, writing guidelines, and key messaging style guide.
Imagery here can refer to photography as well. Images and photographs are the way through which your brand can come to life. Whether you want to have a human touch to your brand or create a mascot that gives your brand a life-like image, having the right imagery can go a long way. Imagery doesn’t only refer to photographs or images it can include illustrations or graphics that align with your brand values.
How to create your own brand toolkit?
Creating a brand toolkit might look like a lot of effort, but really it just involves you taking a look at a few inherent elements of your brand and answering a few questions. We have put in a brand toolkit template that can help you craft the best brand toolkit. So follow the brand toolkit template, as you go along. Let’s get started;
Step 1: Creating your brand identity
The first step to creating your brand toolkit is to really make use of the 5 W’s. It involves answering what your brand is, who the visionaries of the brand are, where your brand is located (optional), when did you start your brand, and lastly why your brand is different from the rest in the market. In our brand toolkit template, we will take a closer look at the different elements of your brand identity.
Step 2: Creating your visual identity
The second step is to create your visual identity, which provides an effective visual identity and communicates your brand to your potential audience. The visual identity includes your logo, color palette, typography, imagery, and other elements that create a memorable brand. We have outlined a visual identity checklist that can help you check off all these elements, download our brand toolkit template and check it out yourself.
Step 3: Finally, brand hygiene
No no, we don’t mean sanitation! But yes, hygiene for your brand includes brand values, brand positioning, and the overall standing of your brand. In our brand toolkit template, we have put together a small questionnaire that will help you answer them all.
In conclusion, a brand toolkit just involves a collection of all visual and verbal elements of your brand. A brand toolkit can help in creating a strong presence of your brand personality and brand values. While creating a strong brand toolkit, it is essential to use a comprehensive platform that allows you to store, access, proof, and scale your creative process. If you are looking for one such tool - Artwork Flow can be a great option. Start your seven-day free trial and create a consistent brand image.