See branding as an investment and marketing as an expense.
Every dollar that's ever been spent on the brand adds leverageble equity to help launch new products, or associate brands with the parent company.
Follow brand standards to speed up success.
Guidelines help keep the creative process on track, which eliminates wasted time pursuing ideas that aren't "on brand."
Build the brand, don't erode it.
Launching a new brand without following corporate branding may solve immediate issues, but over time -even a short time- it can erode positive associations or create negative ones. Get the job done AND build the brand.
Celebrate the organization, not the individual.
Like the bricklayer who can point to a completed skyscraper and tell his child he built the building, you are contributing to the overall success of the company when you stay on brand.
This is one of the best arguments I've read for using guidelines to stay "on brand." We've all worked in organizations where domineering people use subjective (me, myself, and I) reasoning to justify their decisions rather than thinking in terms of leveraging the whole. Guidelines -- or better, policy -- can build brand equity faster and stronger.
I'm reminded of an axiom I heard in a financial marketing conference about 15 years ago: There are two kinds of activities in any organization: those that build the brand and those that destroy it. Use guidelines to help you avoid brand-destroying activities.