1. Keep your guidelines accessible.
Have a hard copy on display at each team members desk. Have them put it in a designated place that protects it from being buried under papers, making it convenient to reference. Keep a digital version in a shared folder as well.
2. Highlight, earmark, write notes in the margins—go crazy!
This document is a tool to be used regularly. Refer to it often. Your brand guidelines are the first place you look when you’re questioning a layout, messaging strategy or visual. Use it to gather consensus among team members and move things forward.
3. The Brand Police.
Appoint one person to be responsible for knowing the content backwards and forwards—to own it. Give this person the authority to enforce the guidelines. To be the final sign-off and quality control “Brand Guidelines Police.” It’s key to have one person who knows it best.
4. When it’s time to fix.
Brand guidelines that work well are easy to follow. If it’s difficult to uphold them across your marketing materials, it’s time to think about a revision. The guidelines may be too constricting for your current needs, or lack clarity. In some cases, the introduction of a new product line or audience will trigger an update.