Many rebranding efforts fail because they are simply not executed properly.
Rebranding has become all the rage in recent years, with well-known brands, like Adobe Creative Cloud, Burger King, Pfizer, Cadbury and BMW making efforts to reinvigorate their identities and directions. A rebranding happens for different reasons, and it takes a lot of time, money and hard work to roll out your new message to your audience. A successful rebranding can help sustain your brand and grow in the market. Whether you are planning to rebrand or not sure if your business needs one—read on to learn more about rebranding and how to come up with the best rebranding strategy!
What is “branding” and “rebranding”?
Branding means developing an identity to distinguish a brand from its competitors and convey its mission and values. Building a strong brand requires coming up with an outstanding unique value proposition (UVP)—a concise and clear statement that explains the benefits your business can bring to your customers.
However, with the constantly changing markets and trends, brands need to keep pace with the consumer’s interests, which creates the need for a rebranding. Some rebranding projects aim to freshen up the image of an already successful brand, while other rebranding campaigns seek to cut ties with the past and take on a whole new look and feel. In simple terms, a rebranding is a marketing strategy to create a new corporate image for a brand through changes in, for example, its name (e.g. Facebook’s parent company to “Meta”, Burbn to “Instagram”, AuctionWeb to “eBay”), color scheme, logo or design concept. Rebranding can be simple or elaborate, depending on the brand’s strategy.
Tips to help you forge a smooth and effective rebranding journey
Define your reason for a rebranding
The importance of having a solid reason to rebrand cannot be stressed enough. Why do you want to rebrand? Is it to accelerate growth, or does your brand need to stand out among the expanding competitors? Did you identify a problem in your business? Having your meaningful reasons clearly laid out will make it much easier to plan your strategy and define your steps accordingly. Some of the top reasons why your company needs a rebranding strategy are:
- Repositioning your business to stand out from competitors
- Reflecting a new entity after mergers and acquisitions
- Tapping into new markets
- Introducing your new business philosophy (e.g. mission, vision, values)
Your brand is based on people’s perceptions and sentiments about your company. If you’re established and well-known, you would not want to change your brand image or logo out of the blue. A reckless rebranding strategy may fall flat when executed or do more harm—like losing trust from customers, undermining your reputation and wasting time and money—than good to your business. Hence, you should not take this step impulsively because it takes decent market research to establish a rebranding strategy to ensure your effort and money won’t go to waste. Here are some reasons not to jump into a rebranding:
- Merely to get attention
- Following market trends
- Feeling bored with the brand logo or slogans (while your customers might actually like them)
- Covering up an internal crisis
- Decline in sales (which could be a result of a bad product offering)
Making the decision to rebrand is a highly risky one, and it involves looking at a number of factors. To lower your risk of failure, be sure about your reasons for rebranding and the outcomes you want to achieve. Do your research and evaluate whether rebranding will boost profitability and help you reach your growth targets.
Analyze your competition
Before creating the perfect rebranding strategies, look at your competitors’ actions. You don’t always need to implement your decisions to see their impact. A quick study of your audience’s response to your competitors’ strategies will give you a fair idea of whether your plans will provide you with the results you expect.
Decide whether you need a partial or full rebranding
You don’t have to go all-in and change everything about your brand image. Depending on the message that your company wants to deliver, you can decide the extent—partial or full—of the rebranding plan. For a more established firm, a partial rebranding may be more beneficial, in the sense that it can assist in maintaining brand loyalty and refresh the company’s image.
On the other hand, when your firm undergoes a significant transformation, such as mergers, leadership changes and product upgrades, the total rebrand approach might be necessary. As a result, the identity of your company’s brand must be changed in tandem with its goals, mission and values.
Understand your values and mission
Nothing works without a clear understanding of your company’s values and mission. Further, it is also a crucial step to make sure your rebranding strategy will not completely deflect from your current branding (especially if you are going for a partial rebranding). If you are rebranding without knowing what your core principles are, it might confuse your customers when you announce a new brand image, logo or name; thus, your company might risk losing their trust and loyalty.
Rebranding can be the key to giving a new life and direction to your brand, which will help you accomplish the goals you have set for your organization. With a clear vision, it can do wonders for your brand!
Header image courtesy of Unsplash