The Learner’s Perspective
When a learner launches your online training do they know that it belongs to your company? Could a customer recognize your company by looking at your course?

I have always thought that training material should mimic the branding of the company and/or organization. So why do I think this way? Most companies spend a lot of time and money to develop a brand and a look/feel that they want to portray to the public. Often these are marketing professionals that team up with designers to create all sorts of electronic images/video and print collateral. If they’ve hired the professionals and spent so much money, why are we trying to recreate the wheel?

On a different note, many times our instructional designers are not multimedia gurus. Too often we waste time trying to create an interface, buttons, color scheme, etc. when in the end it still doesn’t look as good as what we could have gotten from marketing.

One other thing to consider is if your courses are for external customers or internal employees. It may be more important to use the appropriate branding if you’re targeting external customers. However, I’d recommend that even internal courses look similar to the overall company’s brand.

How to start branding content?
The first thing I’d do is talk to the marketing / advertising department. This could also include the website team. Most likely they have all of pieces that you need. (and in the file types that you need also). Many different layouts, images, colors, etc could be based on those corporate branding files.

A few things that I’d look for:

Color schemes
Most companies have established color schemes. You don’t have to limit yourself to just those colors but they could be the base for what you design. Or maybe use the main colors and add another one for accents and highlights. If you’re in a large company each division may have it’s own color scheme.

Fonts
Does your company have certain fonts used for tag lines, annual reports, and /or presentations? These may not end up being your main content fonts but they could be used for headings or within various image layouts.

Layouts
Marketing may have various PowerPoint templates that they use for presentations. This could be tweaked and used in many different rapid eLearning development tools.

Images
Does corporate have an image library? Have they purchased images in the past or maybe they have a stockpile of ones they’ve taken themselves? For example, if you work for a bank you could find pictures of branches, lobbies, employees, ATMs, etc that could easily be used in courses. Don’t forget about the website team. They may subscribe to a monthly image library that you could tap into. (added a user may not cost very much.)

Logos
Make sure that you get as many logo sizes, shapes, colors, and transparencies as possible. Logos are great because not only can they be used at the beginning of the course they can also be integrated into images. For example, does your company logo have a symbol? If so it can be used throughout various components of your course.

What other things should be considered when branding courses? How can you find what you need?
We’ve also created eLearning templates that are branded.


Checkout these eLearning PowerPoint templates. (40+ themes, 75+ layouts)

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