Branding is not just for cattle, yo. Although if you’re thinking along those lines, you’re actually not too far off. See, cattle are branded so that everyone knows which farm they’re from. Similarly, for anything that your church puts out into the stratosphere, we want people to know where the material came from. It’s that simple.
However, branding does NOT mean slapping your logo on the rump of every piece of paper, social media graphic and powerpoint that ever walks through your church. Branding is a much wider concept than just logos; it encompasses how people perceive your church. And, thankfully, with a brand kit, you can control (to some extent!) how people perceive your church.
What on earth is a brand kit?
A brand kit is simply a document that you or a graphic designer can put together to remind you of all the design elements that are a part of your church branding. So, for instance, you might have a specific font you have decided to use for your church, but in the brand kit you could specify what size, boldness, italics, and alignment to use for that font. You can then send your brand kit to everyone in your church who is designing for your church and you can all produce similar looking content. This similar looking content will help people to identify your brand, and therefore identify your content with your church.
Brand kits are also incredibly useful if/when you need to leave your church or step down from your position. A clear brand kit makes handover easy, and it will save you hours of repeating yourself.
Feel like listening instead of reading? We've got you covered.
Before we begin:
Before you do anything, I want you to make sure your church already has branding. If your church doesn’t already have a logo, specific colours, fonts and photos that all work together, then that is a conversation we’ll have another day. It is a huge amount of work to put together a brand that you and your church leaders will love, and a brand kit is just a small portion of that!
Secondly, don’t worry about your graphic design abilities. For a brand kit, this doesn’t matter too much. We want the information to be there in spades, but because brand kits are only meant for people within your church already, you don’t have to stress over making it absolutely perfect.
Alrighty, let’s get down to business.
STEP 1 | Hunting and gathering
First you need to do a little bit of hunting and gathering. Make a folder on your computer called ‘Church Branding’. Inside that folder, you want to put all of you church logos, fonts, colours, frequently used photos, and anything else that you think would be helpful. Once you have everything in one place, it is a lot easier to digest all of the information into a brand kit.
STEP 2 | Write a short description
Open up a Publisher/Pages Document and give it a title at the top of the page. Write a short description of your brand kit, why you’ve put it together and how it is useful to the reader. You can even copy and paste what I’ve written below and change some of the words to suit yourself.
Welcome to the ________ Church Brand Kit. In here you will find information on the correct logos, fonts, colours, tag lines and inspirations we use here at ________ Church. We’ve put this brand kit together to ensure that every piece of design work we do at the church looks cohesive and inspiring. Please use it for any work you do for the church. We truly appreciate your work for the church and pray that this brand kit will be a useful tool to help you further your ministry at ________ .
STEP 3 | Logo
Pop an image of your main logo into the document. This should be the logo that you use on everything, the one that mage it onto your church sign, or your business cards. Label this as your ‘Main Logo’.
Next, add in your ‘Alternative Logos’. These are the logos that look similar to your main logo but have a slight difference. It might be that it also includes your church tag line, or is a different colour, or they might include a square version for social media. Alternative logos are incredibly useful when designing web or print media as they give you more freedom with the shape of the logo, and the colour of the backgrounds that you are placing the logo on.
STEP 4 | Colour palette
You know when you’re trying to guess what a colour is just by sight? With the amount of colours out there, it is virtually impossible to guess correctly. I’ve seen this happen soooomuch in different churches, and to me it indicates a lack of communication. Find out what the hex codes for your church colour palette is, and write those codes in your brand kit with a swatch of the colour next to it. It will save everyone a lot of guesswork, and then you can input that code every time you need the colour.
STEP 5 | Fonts
Here’s where you get to list the fonts you’re using and how you’re using them. See, it is not enough to say that you are using the font ‘Arial’. You need to detail here whether it is for headings or body text, whether it has been bolded or italicised, and what size the font is. All of these contribute to the overall look and feel of your church brand. Add a swatch of your font to your brand kit too, and information on how to download the font if need be.
STEP 6 | Sub marks and patterns
If you’re lucky to have sub marks or icons you can add these in here. These are often just little details that help make the brand more whole. Write a quick description detailing where the sub marks can be used.
Similarly, if you have patterns that are regularly used for backgrounds for your design material, you can add them to this section.
STEP 7 | Export to PDF
Save your document as a PDF so it will easily transport to anyone’s computer anywhere.
Voila! You have a quick and easy DIY brand kit that will save you oodles of time in the future. Now when you receive emails asking for what fonts to use, you can just attach this document and hit send! Also, to make life easier for yourself, simply hit the button below for your free brand kit template! God bless :)