A great brand starts with a great brand bible.

Personal branding (or company branding) is all about consistency, and consistency only gets harder to maintain as your business grows. This is where having a brand bible comes into play.

In this blog, I’m going to break down the brand bible of your business, from what it is and why it’s important to the elements involved and how to create your own. 

Let’s dive in…

What is a brand bible? 

A brand bible is the rulebook for the way you present your business to the world, which includes your logo, fonts, brand voice, color palette, tone, and more. Anything and everything having to do with your message to the world and the way you present it goes into the brand bible.

This asks the question…

What is the difference between a brand book and a brand bible?

Unlike a brand book, your brand bible isn’t just a reference guide to design choices; it’s a commitment to your established mission, a blueprint for the way in which you engage with the world, and the full expression of your company’s vision. 

The branding bible also covers aesthetics and can be passed along to any designers or advertising agencies you may hire, but it goes much deeper beneath the surface.  

By taking the time to create this, you’re planting the seeds of your long-term success.

Whether you’re making a brand book or a brand bible, if you’re not great with design, it’s well worth the money to hire a designer to help get this stuff exactly the way you like it. It’s your business, after all.

Now, let’s dive into the steps of building the brand bible. 

The 9 Sections of Your Brand Bible

1) MVV Statement

This is your Mission, your Vision, and your Values. Keep these to just a few sentences each. Having these perfectly refined and written down on paper is such an incredibly powerful tool.

  • Mission: Why are you in real estate? Who do you serve and what can you do to help them?
  • Vision: Your ideal vision of the future. How big do you want to grow? Ten years from now, how are you different and how have you helped your community?
  • Values: What ethics are you committed to? What will you never compromise on? This list can be a little longer, up to maybe six sentences, but if you say them, you must stick to them.

Once you write these down, rewrite them. Edit, refine, edit, sculpt these words as if your future depends on it, because it does…

2) Your Brand Bible USP

Your Unique Selling Proposition. This may be the most important aspect of personal branding

Keep this to just a few well-crafted sentences explaining how you are different from your competition. What do you offer that no one else in your area can? Do you specialize? Don’t come up with something broad or flimsy like, “I care more than anyone else…” That doesn’t make anyone any money. 

This is your elevator pitch – your chance to grab them. If you don’t have a strong answer here, think about it and don’t move on until you do. It’ll be worth it.

3) Client Avatar for Your Brand

Who is your target audience? Get more specific… What is his/her name? How old are they? How much money do they make? Kids? What are their hobbies and interests? Do you have any similar hobbies or interests? Where do they work? 

Get very clear on the person you are trying to target, because this will affect your social media and promotional marketing going forward. DiSC profiles are an awesome tool to use here. 

4) Tone / Personality

This is the place where you are going to define the voice you use in every email, every social media post, every conversation. 

Do you come off as purely professional and knowledgeable? Are you fun and charismatic? Are you funny? There are elements of this that you can control and there are elements that you can’t. And you can NEVER fake it. Play to your strengths. 

Check out the profiles of Glennda Baker and Shane Burgman, they’re completely different but equally effective. 

No matter how else you display yourself to the world, there are three things that you should always be, all the time: Trustworthy, Knowledgeable, and Dependable.

This is also a good place to list your hobbies and interests. Do you have anything in common with your client avatar? If your vision is to move into the luxury market, maybe you need to have a few more luxury marketing tactics and interests. If you live in a fitness forward community, maybe you should think of joining a gym. Your personality and tone will affect everything from how often you post to what types of hashtags you use.

5) What’s Your Brand Bible Color Palette?

These are two or three colors that you’re going to use across everything you do. Color comes directly back to your tone and personality. Are you serious and professional? Fun and easy to engage with? Here is a list of color associations to play with:

  • White: Peace, Cleanliness, Honesty
  • Black: Authority, Dignity
  • Blue: Safety, Trust, Efficiency
  • Red: Strength, Stimulation / Hunger
  • Orange: Excitement! Energy! 
  • Purple: Royalty, Luxury (wink-wink)
  • Green / Brown: Earthiness, Security, Trustworthiness
  • Pink: Comfort, Nurturing, Home

You can pick any colors you want which best express your MVV, except for orange and navy… those are taken… Just kidding. But really, investigate what your competition is using and make sure to stand apart from them.

6) Your Brand Logo

There are many different kinds of logos, but I just want to focus on three: symbol, wordmark, and a hybrid of the two. When it comes to real estate, having a symbol will distinguish you from the competition, but I’d recommend starting out with a hybrid. The name of the game is clarity and simplicity. You want people to know what you do right off the bat. Nothing is going to make you look more professional than a killer logo.

7) Your Brand Bible Font

Bouncing right off your personality, color scheme, and logo, what type (or types) of font are you going to use across your website and emails? Legibility is key, but there is also a lot of personality in typography. Using a serif font will make you seem much more serious but having the vibe of a law firm might not play into the picture of the cool local agent.

8) Make a Brand Bible Inspiration Board

Go online and look at some things you want to mimic or outright steal. What do you want your Instagram landing page to look like? What are the best agents out there doing? Make a Pinterest board, take screen shots, take notes. You want to make a visual reference for your own content.

The point of this brand bible is to give everyone on your team a complete understanding of how to create content for your brand. Let’s say you hire a photographer to take your picture for a billboard. The brand bible is the first thing you give them. So, what are some example billboard photos that fit with your brand image?

Once you have this inspiration board made, there is no excuse to not be making beautiful, consistent content.

9) Marketing Platforms and Tactics

At the end of the day, your brand is all about your marketing, so your branding should be a part of your brand bible. I’m not saying you need to include your entire marketing plan, but you should have a section which covers guidelines for the type of marketing you run. 

What social media platforms do you use? How often do you post on each? How often do you do an informative video vs. a walkthrough? What about emails? What does your newsletter look like and how often does it go out?

This is where the work comes in. Look at your vision… How do you get there? 

Get Help Building Your Brand

As I mentioned earlier, building a successful brand is about making it about more than just yourself. You’re putting out your message that is meant to resonate with a wide range of people. 

Having expert guidance is invaluable when building your brand bible. 

If you’re serious about creating a brand that lasts, you know where to find us and contact Tom Ferry