In the world of business, where competition is rife and markets are perpetually evolving, the adage “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” may not always apply—especially when it comes to your brand or rebrand.
Branding isn’t static; it’s a dynamic aspect of your business that needs to adapt and scale with the times. For Managing Directors, CEOs, and COOs who understand the critical value of strong branding, this article serves as a comprehensive guide to knowing when and how to undertake a rebranding initiative.
First – Why Should You Rebrand?
At its core, branding is a strategic activity that encapsulates your company’s mission, values, and unique selling propositions into a distinct image and voice. It’s not just a logo or a tagline; it’s the sum of all the experiences and perceptions held by your customers. Harvard Business Review delves into why branding is more than a marketing tactic—it’s a strategic necessity.
Signs It’s Time for a Change
Outdated Brand Identity
An outdated brand identity is not just a cosmetic issue; it can actively harm your business by making you appear disconnected from current market trends. It signals to consumers that your business may also be outdated in other ways, such as technology or customer service. You don’t have to have a brand that expresses the cutting edge of tech advancements, but you don’t want to be walking around in worn-out shoes either.
Altered Your Business Objectives
If your business goals, mission, or target audience have changed, your branding may need a refresh to reflect this evolution. For example, if you’ve decided to pivot towards a more eco-conscious business model, your old branding may not resonate with your new target demographic.
Mergers & Acquisitions
Mergers and acquisitions are a significant reason to consider rebranding. A fresh brand image can mark the start of a new era, helping to assimilate different corporate cultures and align objectives.
Declining Market Position
If your market share is dwindling or consumer engagement is waning, a well-timed rebrand can breathe new life into your market positioning. Brands like Old Spice successfully reversed declining sales through clever rebranding efforts.
Need for Differentiation 🦆🦆🐧🦆
In a crowded market, a unique brand identity is your best bet for standing out. If your branding is too similar to competitors’ or fails to capture what’s unique about your business, a rebrand can help set you apart.
Steps to a Successful Rebrand
1. Conduct a Brand Audit
Before making any changes, conduct a thorough brand audit to assess your current brand equity, customer perceptions, and market positioning. This is going to get granular very fast, so set yourself up for success and be exhaustive.
2. Involve Stakeholders
Rebranding is a collective game. Involve employees, key stakeholders, and even loyal customers in the decision-making process. Gathering diverse opinions can provide valuable insights into what works and what doesn’t.
3. Hire Professionals
Rebranding is more than a new logo and tagline. It requires a comprehensive approach that considers every touchpoint in the customer journey. Hiring a professional branding agency or consultant can be invaluable. Touch base if you want a little more info on what this looks like as it is an area where you are likely to see huge variance in prices.
4. Develop a Rebranding Strategy
Armed with your brand audit results and stakeholder insights, develop a detailed rebranding strategy. This should outline your new brand voice, visual identity, and roll-out plan across all customer touchpoints.
5. Launch and Monitor
Roll out the new brand in phases to make the transition smoother for your customers. Once the rebrand is live, closely monitor customer reactions and be prepared to make necessary adjustments. Mailchimp’s Case Study can offer some valuable insights around communicating a brand strategy.
5. Allocate Resources Wisely
Ah, resource allocation—the arena where ambition and reality often clash. Resources don’t just mean capital; they also include (wo)manpower, time, and expertise. Planning resources strategically avoids wastage and helps maintain focus on the long-term objectives. A solid project management software can help you track your team’s activities, set deadlines, and allocate resources more effectively.
If you want to learn a little more about how to tackle marketing investment, read all about that here.
Your Immediate Action Plan
- Assess Your Brand’s Health: Conduct an internal and external audit of your brand’s performance, both qualitatively and quantitatively. Use tools like Google Analytics, customer surveys, and employee feedback.
- Consult a Branding Expert: If the signs are pointing towards a need for rebranding, don’t go it alone. Bring in a consultant or agency with experience in brand transformations. Get In Touch here.
- Build a Comprehensive Strategy: Use the insights from your audits and expert consultations to craft a nuanced rebranding strategy. This should involve everyone in the company, from the C-suite to the interns.
The decision to rebrand is seldom easy but often necessary. The market waits for no one, and businesses that cling to outdated or misaligned branding risk being left behind.
Remember, in the immortal words of Jeff Bezos,
“Your brand is what other people say about you when you’re not in the room.”
Make sure they’re saying the right things.