66 Brand Bibles

When some people think “bible,” they think rulebook. Others think of it as a book of inspiration. Most people who read it tend to find a little of both.

Imagine these two modes—rules and inspiration—separated into two different books. That’s what most organizations do when they want to document their brand. Brand guidelines contain the dos and don’ts of a brand. Brand bibles capture its spirit and promise.

Brand bibles trace their roots back to the elaborate annual reports companies began producing in the 1970s. At that time, well-known designers helped companies seize an opportunity presented by their SEC-mandated annual financial reports. If done well, these documents could communicate something to stockholders beyond earnings. ...

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