Online Learning Live – Building Your Online Learning Brand | April 15, 2019 12 PM EDT

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Digital Learning, Brand and Communications: The Holy Trinity

If you’re a Digital Learning professional at a reasonably sized organisation or larger, you’ll most likely be liaising with both an Internal Brand and Internal Communications team. The three teams can support one another in a number of ways and form an effective partnership.


Let’s start with how a Digital Learning Team can work with the Brand team.

Brand guidelines are an enabler for a Digital Learning team, despite the outdated notion of the ‘Brand Police’, critiquing work with an unforgiving eye. Speak with your Brand team and immerse yourself in the brand and values of your organisation. Design work is so much easier when there is mutual trust between the two teams.

A bit of work up front will reap rewards. As a minimum: be familiar with the company logo and its use; check that the correct fonts are installed; prepare swatches of brand colours; build a library of approved assets. In short, think like a Designer.

Will the end result be a catalogue of eLearning modules, each a carbon-copy of the last? Absolutely not, unless that’s what you happen to be going for. The aim is good design that bears a brand’s hallmarks, and this will become familiar and engaging for colleagues. Simply build templates as a basis for all modules and then get creative.

Additionally, applying your organisation’s Tone of Voice will improve Instructional Design. Refine your content with Tone of Voice guidelines so that it “speaks to” end users and delights stakeholders. Further, the importance of user “buy-in” should never be overlooked, particularly where learner fatigue may have set in due to a large volume of content.

All things sparkling copy provides a seamless link to Communications…


The crossover here is very clear. Instructional Designers and Digital Learning Developers are responsible for conveying information efficiently. Thought is given to look and feel, impactful imagery and engaging words. All of which are second nature to Communications professionals.

A strong bond between Digital Learning and Comms is a powerful thing. Comms can proof-read content, get messages out for Online Learning content and even produce full campaigns with a range of media. In turn, Digital Learning can ensure that standard approaches, content and themes are joined-up with those of the Comms team.

In summary

If you are fortunate enough to be able to call on the support of dedicated professionals in their fields, why try and do everything as a Digital Learning Designer, almost certainly to a lesser standard? Think and act like one big team for the best possible results for all concerned.