Brand colors: we need to do better… and, yes we can!

We’re not going to point fingers or blame people, but most brand color guides are flawed, ambiguous, or incomplete. Even brand color guides from large corporations, even those made by large agencies. And these flawed brand color guides lead to lots of discussions and unnecessary reprints, which cost a lot of money, especially when it involves packaging.

Again, we’re not blaming anyone: there were no accurate, comprehensive instructions on how to create a decent, unambiguous brand color guide… Many variables have never been addressed in a clear but understandable way. Until now.

Project BBCG is a free framework for creating brand color guides that are unambiguous and rock-solid. And easy to create, with only a minor extra time investment, and without any license costs! When you follow the guidelines in the tutorial, you will end up with brand color definitions focusing on both faithful and easy reproduction in print.

Project BBCG is not some new theoretical approach. It’s a methodology based on known and proven concepts, years of practical experience, and above all: common sense. Plus: it provides an easy to read tutorial on every important aspect of color: identification and naming, measuring and reproduction,

Some of the key points in getting a rock-solid brand color guide:

  • Use measurements of the color you picked as the primary brand color definition, a reference to a name in a color guide, e.g. a Pantone guide, is not rock-solid. The tutorial shows real-life examples. Measuring the color you like, is a much better alternative.
  • RGB values mean nothing, unless you specify which RGB: the same values in sRGB and AdobeRGB do look different.
  • CMYK values mean nothing, unless you specify which CMYK profile, which ‘print condition’: the same values, e.g., on a coated and uncoated paper, will look different.
  • Automatic conversions from RGB, or Lab, to CMYK are not the best choice for brand colors, a manual tweak will provide a better result, and fewer discussions with printers.
  • And most of all: make it easy to implement! Share ASE files! Try it yourself, with the ASE file you can download below.

These points, and many more, are explained in the tutorial file, which you can download for free! It is not a scientific paper, everything is explained in an easy way, with many practical, visual examples. Take a look in the document below!


You can download and share the tutorial from the PDF viewer above, or download it via these links: English versionNederlandstalige versie, Deutsche Fassung, Svensk version, Chinese (Simplified) version, version en Français, versione italiana, Bahasa Indonesia, versión en español, Türkçe versiyon, Chinese (traditional), Português – Portugal, Português – Brasil, Korean, Japanese. Next to that, there is also an editable Photoshop PDF as a basis for your brand color guide (esempio Better Brand Color Guide in Italiano). And last but absolutely not least, download an example ASE file! Either as ASE file or in case that doesn’t work, nicely packaged in a ZIP-file. Check yourself how easy it is to share and use brand colors this way!
And for the color geeks, here is a sample CxF file of insights4print Orange.
Added 26/02/2023: If you would like to train, educate your colleagues, customers, students about Project BBCG, there is also a Powerpoint presentation available!

Just out of curiousity…

Can you tell a bit more about yourself and your interest in Project BBCG?


    Following topics are covered in the tutorial:

    Part A: Color basics

    1. What is color?
    2. Naming a color
    3. Measuring color
    4. Reproducing color

    Part B: Your brand color

    1. Picking that perfect color
    2. The basic color definition: measure it!
    3. The derived colors
      1. Digital colors
      2. Printed colors
      3. Closest match in color systems
      4. Sharing color definitions with designers: use ASE files!
    4. The Expert Way: CxF
    5. The essential extra information
    6. Putting all together

    Part C: Judging print

    1. It’s psychology!
    2. Light sources
    3. Lesser-known aspects
    4. Do small differences matter?
    5. Don’t forget your monitor!
      1. Capabilities
      2. Calibration, and more


    Help us improve brand color reproduction, share Project BBCG!

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