Ever wonder how brands always have the exact same colors and fonts no matter where you see their material? Business cards, print, web and apparel, they always have the same look and you recognize them instantly. Most likely, these companies have created a style guide aka brand kit that they have on file to reference whenever they need to create new product or promotional material.
What’s so great about a style guide?
Think about this:
What if the designer you normally work with is unavailable or is no longer under contract with you and you need to create new business cards quickly. You scramble around, searching for the names of your web fonts, and trying to color match screen shots and ColorZilla your website. If only you had a style guide set up, you could quickly pull your colors and web fonts, plop them into your creator and move on to the next project. No mess, no stress!
How do you create a style guide?
You can do this a couple of ways. Simply create a template in Word (Windows) or Pages (Mac) and collect all of your elements and record them. You want to name the fonts you use for each heading and style, the color HEX and RGB codes and the names (if you have them). It would look something like this (simplified version):
- H1: Calibri, uppercase
- H2: Roberto Condensed
- Paragraph: Calibri
- Main color: HEX: #B3E9CC RGB: 179, 233, 204
Etc. etc. etc.
Of course, you would record all aspects of your brand (you never know which elements you’ll need!) , and make it easily accessible to you and your design team.
Where does Frontify come in?
Frontify gives you the tools to create a style guide…for FREE. Yeeesssss! We LOVE free for small businesses, don’t we? You can include as much or as little detail as you need for your business. You can upload your logo, record your colors, note your typography (fonts), and include some brand info. The upgraded version removes the Frontify branding and allows more users to collaborate within your brand. Upgrades start at less than $10/month.
If you are a solopreneur, like myself, the free version will suit you just fine. Frontify gives you just what you need to put your style guide in place and makes it easy to hand off to a web designer or app developer. No need to keep questioning you about your brand elements – they will all be located within the guide.
So give Frontify a try and let me know if it helps streamline your process at all. By the way, I have no affiliation with Frontify, I use it for my brand and I just like recommending tools that are helpful to me!