So, you’re considering a rebranding. Perhaps your old brand seems a little tired or outdated, or you’re moving into new markets and outgrew your old brand. Either way, a rebranding is not to be taken lightly. Here’s how to navigate the rebranding process in a way that boosts your company.
Step 1: Establish your goals for the rebranding.
Rebranding is complicated and can easily backfire if your efforts don’t align with your goals. By the same token, your goals can guide your rebranding campaign. To get started, ask yourself why you feel you need a rebranding.
- – Is there a target audience segment you want to reach?
- – Does your brand not express your company values?
- – Is your logo old-fashioned?
- – Do you need to incorporate new products or services? These are all valid reasons to undertake a rebranding, and there are many others. Your unique reasons should reflect your priorities in a rebranding campaign.
Step 2: Decide what you’ll keep.
If you have a well-established brand, an improper rebranding can lead to disaster. You might lose your most loyal customers or fail to draw new ones. Rebranding is expensive, so it’s important to not alienate your consumer base and have all your hard work be for nothing. You should never dump your entire brand and swap it out wholesale. If the priority you chose in Step 1 is to create a more modern visual identity, you need to retain some elements and ensure that you’re affirming your company’s message. Think about a company like Taco Bell has rebranded in recent years. Their core proposition didn’t change and they retained their distinctive bell logo, but their design and advertising are now a little more fresh and modern.
Step 3: Do your homework.
Remember the market research you did when launching your company? It’s time to revisit that, especially if you’re trying to reach new audience segments. What’s important to those segments in terms of visual identity or value proposition? Testing is a crucial part of your rebranding efforts. Assemble focus groups and show them at least two options for a new brand guide. Gather as much feedback as possible. How close is the new brand to the old one? Does it still seem like your company or does it seem like an entirely new one? The last thing you want to do is compete with your established brand!
Step 4: Envision the full scope of your brand.
The face of marketing is ever-changing, with new generations of consumers and new technologies constantly coming to the forefront. Your brand must be flexible enough to accommodate multiple modes of communication with your audience — and potentially, a broader range of demographics within that audience. Do you have a logo that will look good on products, billboards, social media platforms, and anywhere else it may appear? Is your tagline short enough to work within character limits? These are all things to consider when building your new brand kit.
Step 5: Roll out the new brand carefully yet consistently.
Once you’ve completed your rebranding, it’s time to put it into action. Take care with your launch: Depending on what you’ve done and what type of company you are, you may need to ease your customers into it. If you’re a product-oriented company, a complete overhaul of your product packaging, ads, and other assets can be off-putting or confusing to customers. They might not even recognize you! To avoid problems, send email campaigns and make social posts warning customers of the new look. This tactic is a best practice no matter the extent of your rebranding. Once you’ve started rolling out the new brand, be consistent. It pays to take the time needed to redesign any assets you regularly use, so that you’re not stuck with business cards featuring your old logo. Have a set date and time for updating your social media bios, website theme, and any other digital presence. It’s important to coordinate the launch as much as possible.
Rebranding can be a great way to freshen up your company’s look and communicate new products, services, or values in an increasingly digital world. However, it’s important to research heavily before starting the project. Ensure that your vision is aligned with your target audience’s expectations. Then, redesign any and all assets that would be affected by the rebranding. Next, test, test, test! A rebranding needs to be fine-tuned before going live. Finally, give your customers notice of the new brand, then coordinate the release of all new brand elements to the public. With this careful approach, rebranding can elevate your brand to the next level.