What is a Logo Design Style Guide (Brand Style Sheet)?
Often Referred to as a Brand Manual, Logo Design Style Sheet, Brand Style Guide and Brand Identity Style Manual
When you create a logo and deliver it to a client, it’s never as simple as just giving them an image file and saying “thank you for your business!” A logo design and brand identity style guide is the additional tool the client needs to be able to use the logo with maximum effectiveness. Typically, you will get a brand style guide from a brand identity agency as opposed to a freelance graphic designer off the streets.
With a logo design style guide, a client can make sure the fonts on the website or publication match or complement the fonts in the logo. The client can match the website or publication colors to the logo colors. In short, a logo design style guide allows the client to integrate the rest of their design styles with the logo to create a unified appearance.
Logo and Brand Font Family
The first element of a logo design style guide is the font and font family. The designer should always include the font or fonts that are used in the logo. Whether the client decides that they want to mirror the logo fonts in the rest of the website or in the publications they choose to create, they at least have the option to do so when they know what fonts were used in the logo. In addition, informing them about the font you use ensures that they can get the licenses they need to be able to legally use that font.
Brand Identity (Logo Design) Colors
There are far too many colors that can be used, to expect a client to visually match a color with one you use in a logo. This is why the style guide always includes the colors used, in four formats: CMYK, RGB, HEX, and Pantone.
Knowing the color codes in these formats enables a client to make sure that colors on a website or in a publication accurately reflect the colors in the logo. This is essential to creating a polished, professional look. When it comes to creating a web design, a color that is “close enough” to the colors used in the logo is not actually close enough. You need colors that are an exact match.
In addition, having the color codes allows the client to make sure the colors in the logo are accurate when printing them or publishing them in different formats. CMYK is a format that is frequently used in print, while both RGB and HEX are often used for screens. Pantone is not used as frequently as the other formats, but it is good to include it for clients in case they discover they need it, especially as it is very easy to convert and find the Pantone color from the RGB code.
Branding and Logo Design Minimum size
With every logo design and brand identity graphic design project, there is a minimum size at which you will start losing so much detail that the logo won’t look good. It will become difficult to see the logo clearly. Obviously, the client is entitled to put make the logo as big or as small as he or she wants, but including a minimum size in the style guide enables the client to show the logo off to its best advantage.
The minimum size should include a size in pixels and a size in inches or centimeters. The pixel size is for screens, and the inches or centimeters size is for publications.
The clear zone is an essential part of the logo style guide, though not one that is very obvious. There is a certain minimum space that you need to have around the logo to keep it from looking crowded or smushed on a page.
Using the logo style guide
The client is not under any obligation to abide by the rules of the logo style guide; this is not a set of regulations to allow the logo designer to control how the client sets up web pages or publications forever! Instead, the logo style guide is a tool that empowers the client to make the best use of the logo by giving essential information that otherwise would only be known by the logo designer. Typically, brand manuals and logo design style guides are given to clients by graphic design agencies in Sacramento rather than local freelance graphic designs as they take much more time and can be a bit more costly.
When you are looking for a logo designer, make sure to ask whether the logo will come with a logo style guide. If your designer says “no,” or worse, if he or she is confused by this question, then you know to choose a different designer, one who won’t just give you an image file but who will also give you the information you need to use your new logo to the utmost! If you have any questions about our graphic design services in general, please refer to our graphic design frequently asked questions to learn more about our process and they way we work.
If you would like to get started on a project or would like a free quote, give a call today and we can help you, help us, understand your mission.