Is It Time to Rebrand? Why Should You?
Most businesses start with logos, websites, and other branding elements that make the most sense at the time. As years go by, however, every business evolves. Maybe you have a different customer base than you started with. Or your business has gone from local to national. Think about now versus then.
Does your company’s branding – which consists of your logo, stationery, website, social media, and other visual representations – still your business? More importantly, does it align with your vision?
There are many reasons a business rebrands itself or its product. However, it may be difficult to decide what parts to rebrand. Sometimes the rebrand is as simple as a logo change. Other times, the company’s entire image may need an overhaul. The rebranding will help your company with a more relevant brand promise.
Rebranding your business can help you grow your image and visibility as you continue to reach new prospects and nurture your customers. It may seem overwhelming or like a lot of work, but rebranding is simplifying the way people perceive your business. Sure, it has a cost, but it takes money to make money, and this is an investment in your future.
So, how do you know if your company needs to rebrand? When is the best time to rebrand?
- Reputation management. If your business has a bad reputation, it may be time to change things like your name, as well as logos, and other visual representations of your brand. You will need to make a new promise to them that you can keep.
- Market expansion. If you plan to sell a new demographic, you’ll need to create branding that represents the types of customers you want to reach.
- You’re experiencing a sales slump. You’re not sure what’s changed, but it seems that nobody is excited about your products or company anymore.
- You’re experiencing new growth. Businesses can easily outgrow their brand, especially if they’re reaching new markets that they want to keep.
- Management changes/merger. Rebranding is a great way to introduce your changes to your customers and build confidence in your buyer when a major shake-up takes place. Rebranding can help illustrate changes to your brand’s vision, purpose, or service offerings due to a merger or leadership change.
- You’re doing business differently. Rather than doing business the same old way, you’ve upgraded the way you do business. When repackaging you may need to refresh your image and make a bold statement about who you are.
Rebranding isn’t easy, but it can give your company an edge in a world of businesses that haven’t changed a thing in years.
Here are a few tips on rebranding before you take the next step.
- Know your vision. You should know what you want to strive for before hiring a branding agency. The people you hire need to understand your company before you spend time and money hiring an agency to help with the rebrand.
- Know what needs rebranding. Rebranding will most likely include logo, stationery design, website design, social media design, t-shirts, truck wraps, signage, etc. Make sure you’ve counted ALL visual representations of your business when rebranding.
- Be prepared to answer the “why”. Customers are going to ask about the new branding, and you (and your customer-facing employees) need to provide a positive, clear response. A short, one-paragraph explanation should be available to all of your employees.
- Research the competition. Do you know who your competition is? What are they up to when it comes to marketing? Where are you in comparison? Make sure you are providing at least the same level of professionalism while establishing your unique voice.
- Rebranding doesn’t solve problems. Don’t expect it to. Instead, expect it to help you drive new successes.
- Don’t rebrand for the bottom line. Sure, boosting sales is the ultimate goal. However, that’s marketing’s job, not branding. Branding should help your customers recognize your business’ worth and make a statement about it. The most successful rebranding campaigns are coupled with a strong improvement in some area of a company (customer service, product quality, new purpose, greater vision, etc.)
- If you don’t know what works, find out. You can use focus groups to discuss new brand images and how they work. It’s also a great idea to have stakeholders – employees who work in the field, marketing and sales, etc. — have a say in the new brand. What do they like about it, and what do they dislike, and why? Don’t finalize anything until you’ve at least surveyed stakeholders about the change.
Branding isn’t rocket science, but it is carefully planned and can change and enhance the way your business is seen in the public eye. When you rebrand, you’ll probably create a new media kit or send out a press release announcing the change. If you can’t explain why the design elements match your business perfectly and convey new ideas about you, you may need to go back to the drawing board. Rebranding should be done carefully and always with a purpose. Always make sure the people working on your rebrand understand your company’s vision, culture, and values.