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New charity clients often ask us, “Do we really need brand guidelines?”. The simple answer is “Yes”. In this article we explore some of the reasons we give for having this vital tool within your charity.

Maintain brand consistency

You have just invested essential funds in the creation of a new brand, and it is important to protect and sustain the consistency of your brand identity as it’s rolled out across any future materials, on and offline.

A set of brand guidelines gives guidance to anyone implementing any form of marketing material, establishing how your charity should appear and communicate with your audience. This ensures your brand becomes instantly recognisable and helps to discourage rogue colours and fonts (particularly Comic Sans!) from making an appearance in your marketing materials.

Although it is hard to plan for, a set of brand guidelines will also ensure brand consistency in the event of key staff changes within the charity. Any new employee or designer will be able to confidently implement your branding correctly, using the guidelines.

Applying your brand

Develop customer loyalty

When someone comes into contact with your brand, they start to associate this with the level of experience they get from your organisation. It’s important to maintain the same level of brand experience no matter which touchpoints your donors encounter when building their relationship with you.

It will improve their navigation through a desired journey if your identity is cohesive at every step, for example, from a direct mailer to your website, then with follow-up information in an email newsletter.

Your brand will become recognisable, and the donor will know what to expect from you, encouraging them to engage with your charity again in future.

Choose your important brand elements

Build trust

By providing a donor with consistent experiences of your brand, over time you build their trust in your organisation.

This is especially important with the growth of social media, as this may be where the donors see most of the communication from your charity. It is vital that the communications through these channels – both visually and through your tone of voice – remain consistent with your other marketing practices. Your brand guidelines will ensure this happens.

Unite your team

Having the entire team behind a brand means that the whole charity is proud of it. The brand guidelines outline your charity’s identity and purpose to show the level of pride you have in your brand, so we encourage these to be readily available for all staff to see.

Appoint a brand guardian

We will often encourage a key member of the charity to become the brand guardian. This will be the person within the charity who lives and breathes the brand guidelines and can be an essential contact point for anyone in the charity to refer to for guidance on the design of a new piece of marketing collateral.

Building your guidelines

How can we help?

If you are looking at creating a new brand or visual identity for your charity or hoping to bring consistency to your existing brand identity, then please contact us to discuss your project.

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