A successful brand is all in the details. It’s easy to get caught up in designing that perfect logo or snappy tagline for your business, while ignoring the finer points of your brand strategy. Fonts are often overlooked. Many people take them for granted while dashing off e-mails or memos, but underestimate the importance of typography and risk devaluing all the hard work you’ve poured into your brand.
It’s important to get things right the first time. Choose a font style and color that best represents your business and then stick with it. Consistency is key. Keep these points in mind when developing a font you’ll be happy with for years to come.
Find the Fonts that Work
Search for font styles that best fit within your company’s branding strategy. Think of your business as a person; what kind of personality do you want to convey? Is your company an aggressive sales corporation or a high-end clothing store? Serif fonts typically offer more elegant characters while sans serif fonts are more clean and modern. Also consider whether any style variations would be appropriate, such as italics, light, regular or bold. Your font should always function as an extension of your brand.
Make sure your fonts reflect not only what the company is today, but also what it might evolve into 10 or 20 years in the future. Could your business change in any way that would make, for example, an extravagant serif font seem out of place? If you don’t consider this, your business could face a dilemma: abandon the current font and all the brand recognition it has already built up or stick with a design that no longer works for your business.
Determine Your Font’s Function
Where will people be reading your font? Business cards? Billboards? Online? It’s often better to use a sans serif font for websites whereas serif fonts often work well for longer documents. Try using fonts with contrasting characteristics for headlines and body text, which will build visual texture to your document or web page. You can also use all similar fonts for a more streamlined look.
Keep Things Consistent
Companies that are inconsistent in how they use fonts will come across as unprofessional. Carefully chosen fonts can help deliver a strategic message, whereas random diversity mutes your brand’s voice and can portray a lack of structure. This is especially true for websites. Never use one font for the Home page and another font for the Contact Us page, for example. This can confuse readers as they navigate the site and can make information difficult to read. Even print brochures or newsletters can be confusing if fonts are not kept consistent.
Develop a Global Style Sheet
Ensure that everyone who will be updating the website, printing new business cards or tweaking your brochure always consults your company’s style guide. This document is the font bible for your business, outlining which colors and styles can be used for certain materials. It may also contain information on the use of images and positioning of text. Developing a comprehensive style sheet can take some time, but it will pay off by ensuring your brand’s voice doesn’t become muddled by inconsistencies.