A brand guidelines document (also called a style guide) is a great way to make sure that the brand you worked so hard to create looks how you intended it to.

Not only that, but it’s also a great opportunity for the client to fully visualize their brand.

However, it can be difficult to determine where to start when creating brand guidelines.

What should you include in it? How long does it need to be?

Before you create your brand guidelines, you should understand why you need it,

2. Why Do I Need a Style Guide?

Or, as that question should really be phrased:

‘I like creating and designing things, it’s really fun! So why would I need a document that’s going to put restraints on how creative I can be?’

Designers fall into two camps—if you work for yourself, as a freelancer, or for an agency, and do varied work, you might be used to working within the restraints of various clients’ brand guidelines, but you might feel you have a bit more creative ‘freedom’ in your everyday work.

A client might outsource to a freelancer or agency to get a different perspective on their branding, advertising or marketing, and as a result might be willing to lift the restraints of their corporate branding a little to reap the benefit of that fresh creative insight.

After all, bigger clients often have in-house design teams whose jobs revolve around conforming to the company style guide and creating more standardized company materials. Enter the second camp—designers who work in-house exclusively for one business or organization. ”

Read the entire article at Tuts+.