Time for a Rebranding Exercise?: 5 Notes to Branding it Right

things-to-note-when-branding

All businesses start with the creation of a brand. Finding a logo, distinguishing your business from your competitors, making the right sounds (through ads and social media) to attract customers, hitting the notes to create moments of impact with the wider community. 

Your products and services speak for themselves, and your brand speaks to its time. But when the time comes, you know the brand needs a revamp. It may be just one small aspect of your business, say your website or the logo, or it can be a complete makeover. What’s most important: careful preparation and immaculate planning.

You must clearly establish your new brand identity, while giving due respect to all the customers who got you to this point.

A good rebranding pays off. Your brand has the potential to relook its clientele, to speak to new (maybe younger) customers. There may be a chance to expand, across physical regions or even into the digital realm. However, there have been brands who struggle to regain traction after a major rebranding exercise. 

So, what are the things to look out for and take note about a rebranding (or really just a branding) exercise? Here, we highlight 5 points for your consideration.

The Core Messaging

At the heart of every brand, is a core message. You must know what the company stands for, before you can start branding, or rebranding. It’s also an opportunity for you to consider what is working (and what is not) for the company. 

Understand what you want to tell with your brand (or revamped brand), and work it out from there. Get the analytics right, consolidate the figures, know the potential pockets and gaps to be filled, and move ahead from here. 

Then let the ‘heart’ guide you.

Research, Research and Research

Markets are driven by numbers. And knowing the numbers will help you drive in the right direction. Do your audience and competitor research, and do it well (perhaps with the help of an agency). 

You just got on board as the leadership of the company and believe that a rebrand is absolutely necessary? Do the research and help make others believe in your philosophy as well! Evaluate the impact and performance, and make informed decisions to situate your company amidst the audiences, competition and the industry in general.

Caring for your current clientele

They are your existing benefits and evangelists, so before you make any big moves, you need to know what they continually want from the brand, and how a rebrand will impact them. You need to bring them along the journey, and not shock them away. 

A physical shop with a long-lasting relationship with older customers? Avoid moving completely online and going fully digital. A popular drink brand that’s bright and sparkly? Find a continuity with the brand image, colours and packaging. 

A rebrand is a switch up, and not a complete switch around. If possible, invite your most earnest clients and customers to a focus group, to understand their expectations, and how you can rebrand to serve them better.

Communications and Consistency

A rebranding (or just any branding exercise is, really) is an outward communication. Communicating with the public is crucial to a good and smart rebranding campaign. Find all the avenues (free or paid, if it’s within budget) that’s appropriate to the company, to get the news of the rebranding out. Share as much (or as little, if you prefer) information on the rebrand, some background, and how you wish the revamped brand will take the company. 

The key to a successful rebranding campaign, is the new brand getting recognised, far and wide if possible. 

Another important ‘C’ is for Consistency. These days, a brand has numerous touch points under its net. Shopfront, mall spaces, media advertisements, social media channels and everything in between. Be vigilant, be thorough. You need to ensure consistent use of the new brand. The new personality should also be correctly and consistently conveyed via all the touch points. 

Managing Expectations

There are many reasons why a company (or its products) should undergo rebranding. And a revamp, no matter big or small, will have its impact on its people, and its stakeholders (and shareholders). 

Visual changes will be fast, but the matching numbers might or might not change at a similar rate. Shareholders and company staff should understand that a revamp will have its impact on the company’s results. And this may be negative in the immediate quarter. The aim of course, is for consistent sales and earnings, or an improvement, but a slight decline may happen when the changes hit. Know that this phase is entirely negotiable and transitional.

Also, a rebrand might similarly take a hit on a company’s internal culture. Work flows might change. Processes might be elevated and sped up. Help all in the company get on the same page about what the rebranding is about and what to expect before, during and after the execution,  and move forward collectively, together as one. 

It’s time for change?

Make the change a good change. Make your new brand shout. Do it with an agency who will understand you inside out and help make your rebranding (or even a first branding) pout and sprout. 

If you have issues with getting the right tone of voice, or want to set out on a new journey with a new pretty and functional website, or just want to lay the guidelines and realise your imagined perfect brand, get in touch with I Concept Digital today.

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