Guidance on building a brand standard
Branding is powerful and can help your church communicate its unique identity. Having a brand standard helps create awareness of your church and differentiates it from any others. It allows you to communicate what type of church you are and the culture within it.
Branding is not just a logo. Branding is a way of defining your church to yourself, your team and your community. It could be called the “identity”, but only on the understanding that it embodies the core of what the church is and its values, not just what it looks and sounds like.
You want people to connect emotively with your church, engage with enthusiasm and become loyal congregation members and devoted Christians. Having a brand standard will strengthen and support this.
Start by defining your brand
Pinpoint the space in the ‘market’ your church occupies and research the emotive and rational needs and concerns of your community and future congregation. Your brand should promote your church, connect with your community and differentiate you from other churches.
Determine your values
Your creative and tonal values can make the creative process, whether designing a logo or printing banners, much simpler as you will always have guidance to follow and standards to uphold. This should connect with and flow out of your vision as a church. An example of HTB’s creative and tonal values may be found below.
Speak with a consistent tone of voice
It will help reinforce your church’s character and your community will be aware of exactly what to expect.
Don’t try to mimic the look of other churches
Try and carve out your own distinctive identity. Use others, like HTB, as inspiration but try not to copy them. Your congregation and community are likely looking for something more original and authentic, that aligns with how they feel about themselves and the area they live in.
Always consider your branding when communicating with your community and congregation
The old way of stamping your logo on everything just isn’t enough anymore
The future of branding is fluid and engaging. Generate some intrigue and excitement. This is the way to foster ambassadors who will revel in telling other people what they have discovered.
Tips On How To Successfully Implement Branding
For Your Church
Creating a website can often be a daunting experience and may involve lots of code and all sorts of complicated things. The platform you choose would ideally offer the functionality you need along with ease of use and affordable pricing. We’ve tried and tested all sorts of website builders and found Squarespace to be the easiest to use.
A new site can be started with 3 or 4 pages and evolved in the weeks and months after the church services are underway. As you may know, in this digital age, your website is often the front door to the church and so it is important to help people find and navigate your site easily.
At HTB/Alpha we’ve built the Alpha websites, The Marriage Courses and Focus using Squarespace. In addition to that, a number of HTB church plants have built their websites using this platform as well.
If you prefer to have someone set up a Squarespace website for you, we highly recommend Jason Baldry from St Thomas Norwich.
This is a content management system (CMS), that with the use of ‘blocks’, you can drag and drop to create your website.
Quick and easy to maintain.
Built for those who are non-techy as well web developers.
What you see is what you get, meaning for example, if you want text to be bold you just highlight the text and press the bold button (like you would do in MS Word).
Please note, the following is not included:
Squarespace doesn't offer a built-in option for recurring or subscription payments at this time.
Anything that would necessitate integrating with a third-party Application Programming Interface (API).
Free trial of Squarespace for two weeks.
Squarespace is cost effective. Here is a breakdown of their prices.
Squarespace comes with its own design templates that are responsive (mobile friendly).
It’s very customisable, so when looking for templates, don’t just look at the layout that you are seeing but the overall style and functionality.
You can’t combine templates.
Assistance with Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) which helps your website get found by search engines.
Social integration - ability to have links to your Facebook, Instagram etc. and/or have a live feed of your social updates.
Integration with Mailchimp for church newsletters or large email mail outs. This also integrates with ChurchSuite.
Domain & Hosting
These days keeping your website and data secure is top priority. In 2018 the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has come into effect and so websites will need to have the https setup. The S on the end stands for security and will mean that each website has a SSL certificate. Squarespace offers these as standard now.
Google Docs - you can connect forms to Google Docs to capture data. We recommend only using this for non personal identifiable information. This means not using it for things like parental consent forms but maybe food options for an event instead.
IMAP (protocol used to access email)