It is no surprise to anyone that marketing departments do not have the endless budget to satisfy a hungry company’s every marketing desire. In fact, many times it is difficult to squeeze enough money out of the overall budget to get some of the necessary tasks executed.
Oddly enough, many times over-spending in marketing is due to an elusive culprit: inconsistent branding.
If I had a dollar for every company who had inconsistent branding, I would be a very rich man. Now is this the point in the blog where I start wagging my finger and saying “bad company, bad bad company!” Absolutely not! I have been there and understand how a company strapped for cash and overworked can struggle to get a consistent image together. There are changes in staff, or maybe the upper management is impetuous when it comes to graphic changes.
No matter what it is, you need to create a Branding File that is to be used as the main be all and end all. This file should be created on a shared drive so that any one can access it, but only one person can add to it: the head of marketing.
Now what goes in this file? I would suggest the following items be added to the Branding File:
Your Logo: This would be the logo that is approved to be used. Do not add every logo file in history here, just the one you will be using.
Word Document: A word document that has the following elements included in it: the approved font used in your logo, the approved font that you wish to use on all of your promotional materials (can be more than 1, but not more than 3), the colors you will be using and their corresponding RGB, CMYK, and HTML numbers
Images: Any images or stock imagery that you will be using in your marketing materials
Long Description: This is the long description of your business – 6-8 sentences that describes your entire business focus, what you sell or provide, location and more.
Short Description: This is the short description of your business. 2 sentences that explain your business fully
The last two items sound odd when we are talking about branding, but I believe it is very important to have boiler plate descriptions that you can use on the fly in any marketing that you have. If both of these are approved, your team can pull the verbiage whenever they need it.
Then when you are ready to have something designed or send something to the printer, you will be able to find exactly what you need without having to scramble for files and descriptions. You will be able to get your printed and online materials to one color, look and overall consistent branding. By doing this you will increase your credibility ten fold and help bring a more professional sheen to your business!
While this may sound elementary, this simple exercise will help you not only get organized, but also act as a springboard for a more organized marketing approach.
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