50 best brand identity guides for inspiration

50 Best Brand Identity Guides for Inspiration

The number one priority that a branding agency should focus on when it comes to building a brand is consistency. Just like you are in a grocery store, you don’t want to struggle to find your favorite coffee brand; you should be able to spot it from a mile away. What makes best brands unforgettable is the fact that they remain consistent in their design elements such logos, images, fonts, and colors. You will only have to see them for sometime and they will stick in your mind, giving you that sense of security and credibility.

To establish brand consistency as a creative agency, you will first need to generate a styles guide. This is some sort of branding rule book that allows marketers, community managers, graphic designers, web developers, and packaging departments to remain on the same page while spreading brand awareness to the public. To help you better understand the importance of consistency in a brand, we have compiled a list of 50 great brand style guides, which you can also use in your next branding project as an inspiration.

What is a brand style guide? 

Before we get into that, let’s first define what brand style guide is. Also known as brand guidelines, brand style guides are used to govern the design, composition, and the overall look and feel of a brand. Brand guidelines most of the time determine the content on a company’s website, blog, logo, and marketing efforts.

Think of some of the most popular brands around. What makes them easy to recognize is their consistency when they advertise on broadcast or print media. They maintain the same color, tone, language, and style when passing out a message to the public. While not rigid, they are cohesive and well-organized.

What is a color palette? 

A color palette refers to a combination of colors used in a particular company, business or institution to showcase its brand visually. A brand’s color palette can be elaborate or simple depending on what emotions a design agency wants to convey using color.

Companies that used several colors in their color palette most of the time spread these colors to specific types of content marketing. The best way to properly incorporate color palettes is to use two colors in your logo and other two colors in your blog or website design. If you want to use two more colors, you can apply them in your printed branding material.

As a web design agency, when you are trying to use different colors in your color palette, it is always good to know their HEX or RGB color codes. Remembering the exact color shade may be difficult, that is why these color codes have numbers and letters to make it easier to recall the exact brightness, shade, contrast, and hue. This will prevent you from gradually drifting your colors and appearance when you generate new content.

Now that we have given you a detailed description of what brand styles guide are, here are a few types of examples of brand style guides that you can use in your design firm as a source of inspiration.


  1. Alberta Government corporate identity manual(PDF)
  2. Apple Pay identity guidelines(PDF)
  3. British Airways brand guidelines(PDF)
  4. Christopher Doyle identity guidelines(PDF)
  5. Oregon State University brand identity guidelines
  6. Audi CI
  7. Bath Spa University brand guidelines
  8. Belfast brand identity guidelines
  9. Berkeley brand identity
  10. Boston University brand identity standards
  11. Boy Scouts of America brand identity guide(PDF)
  12. Brandpad guidelines and assets
  13. British Council brand website(registration required)
  14. British Rail corporate identity manual
  15. Canadian National Railway Company visual identity guidelines(PDF)
  16. Carnegie Mellon brand standards
  17. Animal Planet brand guidelines
  18. Haas School of Business style guide
  19. Cisco logo usage and guidelines
  20. Code for America website style guide
  21. Columbia University visual identity(PDF)
  22. Liberty University brand identity policy
  23. Dropbox logos and branding
  24. Duke University brand manual
  25. easyGroup brand manual(PDF)
  26. Edinburgh Council brand guidelines(PDF)
  27. Facebook brand assets
  28. Google visual assets guidelines
  29. UK elements
  30. Mozilla Firefox branding
  31. Heineken visual identity
  32. IEEE brand identity guidelines
  33. Kew Royal Botanic Gardens brand guidelines
  34. Pearson logos and style guides
  35. Lloyd’s brand guidelines(PDF)
  36. Macmillan identity guide
  37. MailChimp brand assets
  38. MasterCard brand center
  39. Microsoft corporate logo guidelines
  40. Cornell University brand book
  41. NHS identity guidelines
  42. NASA graphics standards manual(mid 1970s)
  43. National University of Singapore identity
  44. New York University identity and style guide
  45. Channel 4 identity style guides
  46. NYU-Poly identity style guide
  47. Ohio State University brand guidelines
  48. Ohio University brand standards
  49. Mississauga’s Brand Story
  50. Pacific University brand standards(PDF)


With these resourceful brand style guides, you can try to create your own brand identity by applying some of their ideas to web design agencies. Remember that what makes best brands stand out is their consistency in the way they apply and present their design elements.


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