If you’re in branding or marketing, no doubt you’re used to the content style guide when you’ve done brand work for yourself or a client.
How though, does a content style guide compare to the StoryBrand BrandScript? Better yet, can marketers use both tools in conjunction to give brands a deeper voice and story?
We think it’s possible.
In this post, we will compare two tools that branding experts are intimately familiar with: the StoryBrand BrandScript and the content style guide.
We’ll go over the basics of each branding tool, list some of the pros and cons for each, show you how to work with the tools in conjunction with one another, and supply direction if you must choose just one.
Who wins in this fight of branding tools doesn’t necessarily matter, because our businesses, brands, and clients ultimately win when we learn how to wield them more effectively.
To start, let’s examine a few of the basics of the StoryBrand BrandScript.
Basics of the StoryBrand BrandScript
The StoryBrand BrandScript is a tool that marketers and business owners use to clarify their messaging.
It’s free to use online at mystorybrand.com and it’s made up of eight modules.
Each of the eight modules helps you to craft a cohesive and customer-centric brand story for a product, organization, or campaign that is taking place.
The goal of the StoryBrand BrandScript is to help its users clarify their messaging.
Basics of the Content Style Guide
According to Influence & Co., a content style guide is “a set of standards for the writing and formatting of content for a specific publication, organization, website, or field. Ultimately, style guides establish and enforce style rules to improve communication and foster consistency.
In other words, a content style guide determines the specifics of the content you write and identifies the perspective from which the brand speaks.
This document is where you will decide whether your brand uses the oxford comma as well as many other grammatical and written communication subtleties.
A content style guide is different from brand standards in that the style guide focuses more on written communication. Brand standards tend to focus more on the visual aspects of a brand.
Pros and Cons of the StoryBrand BrandScript
Below are lists of pros and cons when you work with the StoryBrand BrandScript.
Pros of working with the StoryBrand BrandScript
- It’s simple; anyone can use it.
- It doesn’t require expert knowledge.
- It’s free.
- It does more than give you copywriting points; it clarifies your entire brand story.
- Working with it can directly impact your bottom line.
Cons of working with the StoryBrand BrandScript
- It’s high-level; doesn’t get into detail about voice or style.
- It assumes you run a profit-centered business (as opposed to non-profit or government).
- It requires some understanding of the core concepts.
- You need to give StoryBrand your information to use it.
- It can’t be used on mobile.
Pros and Cons of the Content Style Guide
Below are some of the pros and cons of working with a content style guide.
Pros of working with a content style guide
- It helps you clarify the smallest details of your brand voice.
- Your brand can use it as marketing collateral or as a template for other brands.
- It helps you publish consistent and cohesive content.
- It can help you stay up to date with current writing trends and styles.
- If your business model employs many writers, it can be a returned-to resource.
Cons of working with a content style guide
- It’s a little intimidating.
- It can take some time to create one.
- Can often go unreferenced by the team.
- It’s easy to get stuck in the weeds in both creating and executing the style guide.
- There can be many different interpretations of the content style guide.
Working with Both the BrandScript and Style Guide Together
Now that we’ve gone over the basics of each tool and weighed the pros and cons, let’s talk about working with them in tandem.
It isn’t unheard of to witness a Certified StoryBrand Guide offer both BrandScript and content style services or packages.
If you’re a Guide or consultant, that could be a wonderful way to sell these tools to your clients. Offer a BrandScript development service and then hash out the details by selling a content style guide to clients.
This is the route we’d recommend for teams or business owners as well. Begin with the StoryBrand BrandScript to clarify your overall message and get a high-level view of your brand story and voice. Then develop a content style guide based on the BrandScript that dives deeper into the more intricate details of your brand’s written voice.
If You Have To Choose One…
However, if you’re just starting or your resources or limited, we would highly recommend working with the BrandScript first.
This way, your message is clear, and you’ll have a bottom-line impact.
When the time is right or you have more resources, then you can create a content style guide that fleshes out your BrandScript.
We’ve introduced and examined the basics of both the StoryBrand BrandScript and the content style guide.
We showed you the pros and cons of each, shared how to work with them both simultaneously, and gave our recommendation if you only had to choose one tool.
Have you put together your StoryBrand BrandScript?
If the answer is yes, then please allow our Certified StoryBrand Guides to give you a free 5-minute review of that BrandScript. They’ll give you free and personalized feedback specific to your brand.
Clarify your brand’s message so you can do good online and win more business.