Creating brand guidelines for your corporate video: A beginner’s guide

Getting a name and set of colours is usually enough for a lot of people looking to secure a brand profile for their company, but it’s not as simple as getting a designer and looking on the shelves of B&Q for the part of the Dulux rainbow that catches your eye.

Guidelines for your brand are incredibly important, and it can be as whimsical or technical as you like – but there are certain things you simply MUST get right, should you be producing a video. Here’s a few of the most important we’ve come across over the years.

Tone: Consistent
You should not only go for a specific tone in your writing, but also a consistent one. Every scene in your video needs to have the word “tone” there, just to remind you of what you should go for. Whether it’s funny, sombre or supportive, it needs to have a common thread.

Logo: How are you using it?
Is the logo something to flash up only at the beginning and the end of a video? Is it better as a faded corner-based constant that reminds people who’s producing the video, but that it’s not for overt marketing purposes? Will it only be on the host’s shirt? Think carefully about saturating your audience with your biggest piece of corporate identity.

Writing: Style guide, sub-editing, and consistency
Although the power of words varies from industry to industry, it’s really important you don’t get anything wrong. It only takes one or two typos to really put people off your brand – either because they think you’re not too clever, or you’re liable to making mistakes. We’re not all writers! But we need to look at people who are. Get a style guide in place for consistency, declaring anything between when to capitalise job titles or not, all the way through to whether you use & or “and” in titles.

Marketing: Consistent channels
Variety is the spice of life, but people come to expect where to find your videos, and will keep an eye out. There’s no point in putting one video on YouTube then your next on Vimeo – both are incredibly different communities in both viewership and the qualities associated with videos on these sites. Choose your favoured platform(s) carefully and work from there. It’s not always a case of putting your work everywhere.

Finally: If you do depart from a “norm”, reflect that elsewhere
If you decide to go in a whole new direction for your brand through a video, and you haven’t reflected this in other areas of your brand’s presence – e.g. your own website – then people are going to ask questions, or simply ask why you bothered to go in that direction. If you do something new, tell people to expect it, otherwise you could lose a lot of fans. After all, how many times have you heard someone stop watching a TV show when a character is added or removed? It can be the same for your brand.

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