05 January, 2023
Hamish Smyth, Co-Founder
Since we launched Standards Beta last August, we’ve heard from many of you about what you want Standards to be—and do—for you.
A consistent comment was that you wanted to leverage our branding expertise to help setup a project and automate the creation of guidelines with industry best practices.
We listened, and today we’re excited to launch Outlines. An innovative, powerful new way to automate guidelines built with Standards.
Outlines automate core sections of your guidelines, giving you a starting point so you can focus on the unique aspects of the project.
For early Alpha users, this may sound familiar. Our initial vision for Standards was to automate many of the repetitive (and let’s be honest, boring) sections that are common to most guidelines.
We decided to put this idea on hold while we refined the overall experience, then rebuild Outlines to a level that matched our vision.
Outlines draw on our team’s collective branding experience.
From designing numerous identities to republishing some of the classics, we have distilled our knowledge into Outlines to make Standards an even more powerful tool in your workflow.
Outlines are not templates. We believe guidelines should be tailored to each brand, and templates are counterproductive to this idea. Outlines are a starting point that you can easily customize to suit the unique needs of each brand.
When you setup a new project, there are three Outlines to choose from: Expanded, Essential, or Blank.
Expanded uses your brand assets to automate your project as a comprehensive, multi-page guideline, from strategy to brand applications. It is best suited for larger projects and can form a foundation for a robust guideline for any brand.
You can easily choose which sections or topics to include, all of which can be customized later.
Essential uses your brand assets to automate your project as a compact, single-page guideline, with only the most necessary sections. It is ideal for smaller brands or projects that need a brief one-page guideline.
Of course, you can expand to a multi-page project later on.
Some projects require a completely customized approach, so you can always start from scratch. With the Blank outline, uploading your brand assets including primary logo, colors, and typefaces will still power Automations inside the editor.
We will continue updating Outlines with new Automations and features to help create stunning brand guidelines with less grunt work.
Outlines are live today. We can’t wait to hear what you think!
Also in 11.6.0
The Basic plan (formerly the Free plan) now allows you to publish one live project for free. The Basic plan is great for evaluating Standards, using it while you’re a student, or publishing a project if you don’t fit into our Pro or Plus plans (coming soon).
Basic includes all core Standards features and one live project.
We’re excited to make Standards easier to use with the Basic plan, and hope it helps you evaluate how Standards can fit into your workflow.
In addition to Outlines being added to Setup, you can now define type styles with the fonts you upload. Defining type styles in Setup powers Outlines and Automations, letting you get to work faster.
Our next update will introduce a new plan, Plus.
Plus will include one live project priced at $10/month. It’s designed for brands who only need one live project, and for Pro customers who want to hand-off a project to a client for ongoing hosting and ownership.
For example, a studio on Pro can finish a project, then transfer to a client on Plus. Their client will gain ownership and hosting of the project, but won’t have to pay for the features included with Pro (like unlimited projects, shared workspaces, multiplayer editing, etc.).
We believe Plus addresses your feedback for a plan between Basic and Pro. It will provide designers more options for transferring projects to clients, and is a perfect fit for brands that only require one live project.
The Plus plan and other updates to plans are scheduled for release in the coming months. (Please note: Plus features are still a work in progress, and subject to change.)