The Brand Tool Box: What you will need to create your brand

Once you have figured out your brand and your brand promise (aka what your brand stands for), then you can begin to organize and design the elements you will need to have in your toolbox. Once you have all the tools developed, then your brand standards manual can be written and designed. Having that manual will set the guidelines for anyone working on the brand, ensuring brand consistency. Here are just a few of the tools you’ll need to get started.

Your Name – yep it all starts here.


A visual identifier, a symbol that jam-packs a ton of meaning into one little mark. It does a lot of the heavy lifting but needs support. Hopefully, it has a good shape as shape is the first thing we remember in the order of cognition.


A wordmark is what the name of your healthcare organization looks typographically. Think about how a script typeface looks compared to Arial. Each implies a totally different attitude.


Color is the second most memorable element in your brand toolbox. Differentiating your healthcare organization’s color from a competitor’s creates distinction.


This about what the design of the typeface(s) your brand uses what it says about your brand. Are you straight, tall, and condensed or soft and rounded? Or is there a place for both? How readable is your body copy without being boring. Is the brand’s type common and does it use the default typeface that Microsoft or Adobe presets? While using the default typefaces are easy across a large organization, I thought I’d just put that last note about being common out there for marketers to ponder.


The words you use, how you say them and write them, presents the brand personality and attitude.


How are your healthcare brand’s stories shot? What is the point of view? First, second or third person? How do you tell your stories? Are they documentary style, pragmatic, do you use humor?

Music and Sound

Does your brand have a music style or a music track that every time your commercial comes on TV, the audience knows who it is? Are you techno, upbeat, soft-spoken? Are there strings, trumpets or piano? Think about how these decisions impact your brand. If your brand is highly clinical then using a ragtime soundtrack in your videos would be considered off-brand.

Photographic Style

This is very similar conceptually to video without the motion and the sound. What is the point of view? Are there people in your photos? What is the difference in message between showing facilities and technology vs. showing the same place with people in them? Are you clinical looking or is your approach more humanitarian. Do you shoot the photos tightly cropped or do we see things from a distance?


Does your hospital use it? If so, is it humorous, serious, scientific or data driven?

Graphic Elements

What are they? Does your brand use a texture(s), or patterns? Is there an organic feel, or should the graphics be strong bold and solid?

When I’m charged with designing and creating a brand, we have to answer many of these questions when creating all the elements above. It’s our job as marketers and designers to make sure they all work together to form one cohesive, consistent message making your toolbox easy to use.