How to represent your brand with a creative toolkit
It’s all in a name – and the branding. When building your brand, developing a creative toolkit is essential in setting yourself apart.
A creative toolkit isn’t all about picking pretty colors for your brand. A toolkit builds cohesiveness and consistency within your brand that will engender trust with your clientele.
Begin with a simple exercise. Think of two to three words to associate with your business identity, For example, pretend you’re a fitness brand: confidence, drive, exercise. Bring these words with you as you build your creative toolkit.
There are three key elements you’ll develop while building your creative toolkit: color, font and imagery.
A color palette is a crucial element in building your brand and identity. People associate color with so much: Target’s loud red, UPS’s brown and gold, Tiffany & Co.’s signature blue.
When selecting your color palette, select one or two colors to be your focus. Then, select a few complementary colors that will elevate your brand even more.
Remember to be specific in your selection. Blue is great, but which blue? Navy? Cerillion? Sky Blue? You’ll find consistency in being this specific. There are millions of resources out there. Start with word/color association with your brand and values. Pull out your handy color wheel from second grade to find complementary colors and secondary colors. Stop by the paint section of your local hardware store for more inspiration. There are great resources online, such as Coolor’s color generator. Select a main color and go from there! Collect the RGB and/or Hex codes to ensure the colors are consistent no matter who is creating content.
You may not realize it, but font is everywhere. Look carefully at big brands – competitors like Nordstrom and Macy’s don’t use the same font. Think of Chick-fil-A’s unique script in its logo. You don’t see that anywhere else.
You’ll want to select a font for titling and for body copy. Your titling font can be loud, exciting and bold. For your body copy, be sure to select a simple, legible and accessible font. All fonts selected should be applicable for both digital and print use. Think about which fonts are included in standard software programs and which require a license (and how that impacts usage by other partners and vendors in the future). Remember to keep in mind your brand words.
Check out Google Fonts for help viewing your options.
If you create your photo assets or use stock images, find a theme that connects the images back to your brand. Does the talent in the image represent your brand and clientele? Do you see your brand colors in the image? How do they convey your brand words?
Create a photo library to store new and old photos for your entire team to refer to. If your team needs a specific image that isn’t available in your library, create guidelines on how to select an image that most represents your brand.
So, why do all of this? Your creative process will become much smoother, especially if you outsource your creative. And it helps your brand become more recognizable anywhere, locally or nationally.