It is quite a huge undertaking to rebrand your company or organization. You need to know exactly what image you want to convey and which consumers will likely respond. This could mean a whole lot of brainstorming meetings to discuss important factors including graphics, brand messaging and typography. Improper use of any of these core elements can hamper, or terminate, profitable customer engagement.
The Process of Rebranding
Keeping in mind how costly and complex this process can be, along with the potential danger of taking missteps, it is very important to pose the correct questions before making any moves. The following is a list of questions that an elite group of leading public relations, media strategy, creative and advertising agency executives advise other professionals to ask before they begin the process of rebranding.
What Are Your Reasons for Rebranding? What Do You Expect to Accomplish with The Rebrand?
Prior to starting your project, you must be very clear on the reasons. What led you to want to rebrand and exactly what do you expect to accomplish? If you don’t define your goals clearly upfront, you will not launch a successful strategy. In the end, it will just be a brand update or design change, not a decisive rebranding strategy.
How has Your Brand Evolved Over Time and Where Is It Headed?
Before taking the leap, first, spend some time on internal business analysis and brand introspection. Marketing executives and business owners should be thinking about how the brand has changed over the years, how it has grown into the success it is today and where it may be going in the future. This is an important step because if you neglect to answer such questions early in the rebranding process, you will risk investing in a plan that doesn’t embody the company accurately.
Will a Rebrand Work Everywhere?
All rebranding strategies employ a compelling manifesto, toolkit or guideline that comes equipped with fresh design elements, a new brand voice and more. What is usually missing is true to life example of how these changes will work in all mediums. A successful brand thrives across all marketing channels. Make sure your new brand strategy works seamlessly everywhere, from digital advertising to television and print marketing.
Don’t Forget Your Employees
While you are totally engrossed in the development of your rebranding, don’t forget one of your most vital audience segments. Employees are sometimes completely overlooked or neglected in the process. The huge endeavor involves a big change, not minor tweaks. Values and company vision are sometimes thoroughly revamped. It is not wise to plan your strategy thinking only of your external audiences. Employee involvement and good internal communication are critical if you want the rebrand to be a successful one.
Are You Speaking to Your Most Profitable Target Audience?
Who are your ideal audiences and which personas will have the largest impact on your brand’s bottom line? How will you determine the right voice or the best design choices? What wording, logos, colors, fonts, brand message or corporate culture would be most compelling to viewers and potential customers?
Will Your Existing Customers or Clients Feel Abandoned?
Change can be very exciting, and launching a new image brings a feeling of new hope. However, you should never forget about the loyal following you have already acquired. You existing customer base may have a strong emotional bond linked to your current branding. That buyer passion may work against you. This is exactly what happened when executives at Coca-Cola opted to change things up in 1985 and launched the New Coke. The popular brand took a leap of faith but ended up with an epic fail that not only affected Coke’s success, it changed the dynamics of the entire soft drink industry.
Who Is Your Ideal Audience? What Type of Followers Do You Want to Attract?
Do you know the demographics of your target audiences? Have you learned about their values, household incomes, type of style, education level or how they make purchases? It is common for businesses to first consider changing their design when thinking about rebranding, but the change starts with understanding your ideal audience and redesigning with their needs in mind.
What Values Do You Stand For; What Is Your Brand All About?
There is no point in considering a rebranding if you have yet to determine your value. You first need to know what your brand represents, what it stands for, what your promises are and completely embrace each one of these answers. If it is clearly the best time to rebrand your organization, the change should stem from the heart and reflect the employees, the business culture and the products or services. Ultimately, the goal of rebranding should be to build a long-lasting connection while maintaining your existing customer base.
Are You Focusing Only on Changing Your Brand Design?
It can prove to be very problematic to go through the process of rebranding, simply to make a few color changes or to update your font styles. It can take years to cultivate just the right branding for your company with great marketing and advertising, choosing the appropriate social media platforms, strategic placement and much more. So much time and money are invested the first time around. If the rebrand is solely to change your aesthetics, you might just end up either alienating or confusing your loyal following. Putting forth a rebrand is like launching a whole new chapter. It is indicative of a change in management, significant company growth, or shift in policy or product choices.
Are You Prepared for What Will Come After the Launch?
Typically, most rebrands lose momentum after the first year. This holds true across all industries. Businesses go into this without preparing for the aftermath that follows. Being truly committed to your rebranding means remaining dedicated to sustaining the process for the long term. The hard work begins once the new strategy and identity are set in place.