The Ultimate Style Guide Cheat Sheet
Updated: May 29
Your brand is a representation of your values, beliefs, and personality.
Having a visual brand identity that is cohesive and on point with your brand messaging is so important to help your business stand out from the crowd.
That’s where a style guide comes in to play! Your style guide documents how your brand will be displayed visually through colors, fonts, imagery, and logos. A style guide is an essential foundation of your brand that helps you maintain consistency across platforms and create a uniform brand that your customers and followers will recognize.
So what does a style guide entail? We’re giving you the ultimate style guide cheat sheet so that you can get on your way to creating jaw-dropping visuals for your brand.
What to Include In a Style Guide
There is not a one-size-fits-all approach to creating a style guide, but every style guide should have a few essential components. Start with the basic foundational elements of your brand and build up from there.
Color is a huge component of marketing, and there is a lot of research and psychology behind what emotions each color evokes. We have an entire post dedicated to helping you select an amazing color palette, read it here as a starting point!
Science aside, your color palette should match the overall mood and personality of your brand. The colors also need to go together. Aside from working with a professional designer, we love using the Canva color palette generator to find color palette options
Your brand color palette should consist of primary colors - the main brand colors you will use all the time - and it may also have secondary colors that serve as accents or special occasion colors.
Make sure to include the HEX and RGB code of your colors in your style guide so that you can easily maintain consistency on all your platforms.
If your color palette is the emotional aspect of your visual brand, your font is your personality. Are you quirky or professional? Whimsical or down to earth?
After all, it’s not just the words you say to your customers, but how you say them that matters. Every brand should have at least a body font and a heading font. We also suggest an accent font for special headings.
Imagery is a huge part of your visual brand, and it’s important to decide they types of images you will use. Professional branding photos, stock imagery, personal photos, and graphics are all options when it comes to the imagery you will use for your business.
We suggest creating a mood board or small photo collage of your imagery to include in your style guide as an easy reference to look back on when you are creating marketing content.
Logo + Usage
The last essential component of your brand style guide is your logo, and how to use it. Make sure to specify your primary logo, secondary logo or logo mark, and any color variations.
It’s also important to note how and when each logo can be used. Specify what color background each logo can be used on, if there are restrictions for use on social media or your website, and if the logo has specified sizing or spacing requirements.
That’s it! Put it all together and you have the perfect style guide for your brand. We love creating a one-page document to use as an easy reference when your creating graphics for social media, designing your website, and advertising.