Brand Guide Vs Style Guide : How do you Decide Which is Best for Your Business?  

Table of Contents

Tech entrepreneur, innovator and CEO of Tesla Motors Elon Musk once said, “Brand is just a perception, and perception will match reality over time.” So how do you match perception overtime?  You need to be consistent with your brand and consistency comes with having the right guidelines and strategy to keep your brand in tact. 

You probably might have thought of rebranding and you might have undoubtedly been browsing Google for the best tips on where to begin. You’re inundated with information, and you’re left wondering: who’s right and who’s wrong?

You need a guide but which is right for your business? A style guide or a brand guide? This article explores the brand guide and style guide and which one will fit your business.

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Brand Guides and Style Guides

Brand guides are often used by companies who want to create a consistent look across their marketing materials. They provide designers with a template to follow, helping them produce high quality designs.

Style guides are used by individuals who want to create a unique design for each piece they create. They also provide designers with a framework to follow, allowing them to create original designs.

Brand Guide is used for products like clothing, shoes, bags, etc. Style Guide is used for websites, apps, and other products where you want to make sure everything looks consistent across platforms.

Brand guide example

A Style guide is a brief document that shows the recommended use of your company logo, colours and fonts. In some occasions, a style guide can also use examples of how to apply the brand such as showing stationary design.

Brand guidelines go in to a lot more depth, and most importantly, explain the brand strategy. This means that anyone reading the brand guidelines should get a clear image of how the company want to speak, interact and look both internally and towards their customers.

Benefits of a style Guides 

It helps you keep your design consistent across all platforms and devices. You can create a style guide for yourself or your team to share best practices and guidelines for creating beautiful designs. A style guide also helps you deliver consistent branding to clients and customers. When you’re working with multiple designers, a style guide ensures everyone shares the same visual language.

Now, why don’t you intertwine both an make the best of them for the growth of your business. -A brand Style Guide.

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 The Purpose of a Brand Style Guide 

A  Brand Style Guide is an essential tool for any designer, writer, illustrator, photographer, animator, editor, or creator working on a project that requires branding. A brand style sheet is a document that provides guidelines about how to create a consistent visual identity across all media platforms. It should be easy to read and follow. It should help everyone involved in the project understand the expectations of the brand. Brand style sheets are often used when creating logos, websites, social media pages, flyers, brochures, posters, ads, product packaging, magazines, catalogs, and other printed materials. They are also commonly used when designing apps, games, videos, animations, and other digital creations.

Brand style guide layout
Modern Brand Style Guide Layout

Tips for Creating a Brand Style Guide

1. Your style guide should be easy to read and understand.

2. Make sure to use consistent fonts and colors throughout.

3. Include a table of contents and headings.

4. Use bulleted lists and numbered lists.

5. Keep your text short and simple.

6. Don’t forget to include images.

Read More: 8 Branding tips to grow your brand

Visual Elements

Design is the silent ambassador of your brand.” – Paul Rand

One key element of nearly all style guides is the inclusion of the brand’s brand’s logo (or logos). Guidelines need to cover how the logo should be in all respects, what color(s) it should be and where it needs to be placed.

The issue that usually arises with projects is logo placement varying, as well as other variables that might be different. Ensure that your guide informs everyone of what to do, so they’re prepared each time.

The next visual element to focus on is font, particularly what type of font should be used for specific projects. Now, keep in mind that different font levels get quite complex and can’t be explained briefly. Instead, you’ll need to use details beyond a font name or size.

Include changeable differences like bold words, italics and underlined letters. Finally, make sure to clarify which type of font is used when switching from a title to a header, or from a header to the content text.

Key Take Aways

A brand style guide, therefore, captures your brand and makes it both understandable and replicable.

Well-defined and well-maintained brand style guides allow you to present your brand clearly and to establish trust with your audience, all while ensuring that, internally, everyone you work with is on the same page regarding your brand. When a brand style guide is in place, every single person in your company should understand both what the brand is, as well as how to implement it in the work they do.

A thorough brand style guide has two, equally important halves: visual and content.

Vector explaining visual content in relation to brand guide and style guide.
Visual Content

A visual style guide specifies how all content should be styled, whereas a content style guide specifies how copy and text should be developed inside the design. 

Both collaborate to make the whole better. 

So, in essence, a content style guide tells us how to frame and design the product we want to convey to our audience. A visual style guide demonstrates how to promote the product and make it worthy of our prospects’ time. 

Read Also: 7 Simple Ways to Reposition Your Brand for Growth


In the world of marketing, neither content nor graphics are very effective without the other. This combination of aesthetic and textual rules is referred to as a “brand style guide.”

A great brand style guide can help you to build a strong, recognizable brand, attract new customers, and develop your company’s identity.

We hope that you were able to learn something new from this post! If you want to learn more about brand architecture, feel free to reach out to us.

Visit our branding page for how to get started with brand style guide.

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