A brand board is a short and easy-to-read document that includes all the visual elements of a brand. It usually includes variations of a logo, brand colors, typography, and graphic elements such as textures, patterns, and styled imagery.
A brand board is a road map of your brand that comes with instructions on how to implement each brand element. Your brand board is a reference guide that can and should be shared with your printer, web designer, developers and anyone who is working on the business’s branding. Brand boards are usually created by the graphic designer who helped a client with their logo and web design.
Here are some examples of brand boards:
Your company needs a single uniform brand board because it will ensure your logos, fonts, colors, and patterns remain consistent. Even if your marketing executive goes on vacation, or your web developer hires a subcontractor, or a new staff member needs to create slides for a presentation… if you provide them all with the same brand board that details the guidelines for fonts, colors, and style, their work will look consistent.
Below are examples of four key design elements that are included in brand boards:
- Variations of your logo are extremely important because nowadays we have so many different platforms and formats where a business logo can be implemented.
Ideally, a logo should have a horizontal (rectangle) and vertical (square) version. A company should always have one primary logo that represents them, but a secondary logo helps in situations where the primary cannot fit nicely. If your main logo is horizontal, but your company needs a version of the logo that can fit on its social media profiles (squares), a secondary logo is helpful.
Your brand can also create an icon from your logo, which can be useful but isn’t necessary. That icon is called a logo submark — it’s usually derived from your primary logo, and it can be initials, a monogram, a small image, etc. Logo submarks are often used as watermarks, favicons, parts of patterns, or Instagram highlight covers.
- Brand colors are included in your brand board so that you and everyone in your company can use the exact same colors on all your visual brand elements.
Usually, your company’s brand will have two or three primary colors followed by 3-5 secondary colors (which are often shades of grey, white, or black). In the brand board document a designer will include a hex code for each color to ensure the correct shades of your brand’s colors will always be used in your logo, business cards, and website.
- Typography is essential when it comes to your brand’s consistency. Most of the time a brand should only have two fonts, and never more then three.
One of those fonts is the primary font used for stationery, flyers, and posters. The secondary font would go along with the primary font and would be used only for parts of text that need some accents. For example, sans serif fonts are clear enough to serve as your primary font, but hand-written fonts work better as secondary fonts. In certain cases, companies may opt to have a third font for website purposes only.
- A brand board section of styled imagery that includes different textures, patterns, and example stock photos can help your brand stay consistent — especially in your marketing materials and social media content. When you use the same style of images on your blog, or the same style of patterns in your social media and mail templates, you can increase brand awareness of your company.
If your company does not yet have a brand board, Aventive can create one for you. We live and breathe branding, and we would love to help develop your brand strategy to scale your business. Contact us to get started.