The use of Stone Age in this blog is relevant to the reader – could mean just 10 years for some of the younger folks or pushing on back to pre-Y2K in the 1900’s for our older population. Regardless of how you perceive it, I hope you are able to spend the next few minutes understanding why I feel like rebranding is a topic you are going to wish somebody had told you the truth about sooner.
What is rebranding?
n.) Renewing or reinventing the set of expectations, memories, stories and relationships that account for your customer’s decision to choose your product.
n.) Changing the corporate image of an organization
Think of branding as the icebreaker exercises that we all reluctantly took part in during middle school and that we (still) can’t get away from. The icebreaker activities, no matter how grueling, provided a space for others to get to know you and vice versa. Your brand is the icebreaker for consumers and provides an element that allows them to identify with and recognize your company. The difference is, done right, your brand won’t make people cringe and think of their days in braces and gym clothes.
From the introduction of a new product to reputation management, there is a long list of reasons why a company would rebrand. These are some of the most common reasons our clients inquire of rebranding opportunities:
- Better connection with customers.
- The landscape is everchanging in today’s market and it’s vital that you to stay on top of what your customers are searching for, interested in, and responding to. If your branding is outdated and no longer resonating with consumers, it’s time for an update.
- Better alignment of your brand identity and company.
- Just like coffee comes to mind when I think of a Monday, your brand is what comes to mind for consumers when thinking of your company. If you’ve introduced a new product, revised your company mission or the foundational purpose of your company has changed, make sure that your company culture, offerings and mission align with that thought-invoking branding for consumers.
- To stand out from your competitors.
- If there is a company of similar nature with look-alike branding elements, a company with a similar name, or you just need to stand out from the crowd; it may be time for rebranding in order to move you up in recall and recognition. It’s always better to distinguish yourself away from your competitors in order to keep your potential customers from playing a game of “Where’s Waldo?” in a sea of lookalikes.
Disclaimer: It’s not always time for a rebrand of your company! Don’t take the dive into rebranding because you’ve grown tired of your logo. Typically, once you’ve had enough time to grow tired of your branding, your branding has had enough time to become effective.
Now that you’ve determined whether or not a rebrand is right for your company, it’s time to get down to the nitty gritty. After decades of creating longevity and success through our clients’ branding, we’ve learned a thing or two about what to do and especially, what not to do. These are KSM’s Top 10 Tips for rebranding your company the right way.
Tip #1: Find Your ‘Why’
Because there is a substantial investment involved in rebranding across many levels, you want to be sure that you’re headed in the right direction with the right reasons for heading there. Why are you considering a rebrand? Write out the issues that you’re addressing and determine if rebranding is the answer. Whatever it may be, determine your reasons for rebranding and consider all of the possibilities.
Tip #2: Research, Research, Research.
Get to know your customers and find out what brands your ideal clients are raving about and attracted to. Explore what your competitors are doing, what your potential customers are loving, and make a list of what you need to incorporate to stay competitive and keep your customers raving.
Tip #3: Consider the Color Theory
Just like words mean things, colors do, too! If you’re wanting your brand to communicate that your company is dependable and credible, blue is your best bet. Want to scream creative and playful? Orange is the way to go. Wherever you end up on the color wheel, work in close communication with your designer to determine a color scheme that conveys the right message and fits your brand personality.
Tip #4: Consult a Professional Graphic Designer
The Golden Rule: Don’t let Jimmy that prints your company brochures and outdoor banners design your new logo. In order to get the most of your rebranding investment, talk to a professional branding company or graphic designer to help you through the process. Just like you wouldn’t let your dog groomer shape you up the day before school pictures, don’t consult anyone but a professional about your company’s rebranding.
Tip #5: Keep it Simple
We know that there’s a long list of things that you want to communicate to your potential customers about your business, but sometimes it’s best to say less! While your branding needs to be effective, it also needs to remain simple; leave the rest to social media content, blog posts, websites and ad campaigns!
Tip #6: Determine Your Vibe
Message aside, what do you want your logo to communicate? That you’re funky and a little retro? High-end and modern? A little bit of both? Whether you’re shooting to be bold or understated, convey your vision to your designer and work with them to determine a vibe that communicates the right message. You don’t want your customers entering your business expecting one thing and getting another!
Tip #7: Pick Branding That You Like but That Your Customers Like More
Companies often make the mistake of creating a brand that they like, sometimes overlooking what their target audience is attracted to. Sure, it is important that your company is happy with the rebranding design but after all, it is the potential customers that need to be drawn to your branding and in turn, your products and services. Keep your customers in mind throughout the entire design process in order to ensure that you’re making choices that reflect their wants and needs.
Tip #8: Don’t Do Anything Too Trendy.
Longevity, longevity, longevity. What word? Longevity. Don’t make any choices on fonts, colors, or verbiage that are too trendy. We know that “it’s lit” and the handwritten, script-y font is “the move,” but make decisions that move beyond trends and fads. Your branding should have a minimum of a 10-year shelf life and with that in mind, you can create a brand that stands the test of time.
Tip #9: Don’t Settle.
If you’re working with a professional (we’re talking to you, Tip #4), don’t settle on a design that is anything less than what fits your target audience and company mission. We know that the mountain of revisions can pile up quickly but don’t let the frustration that comes with them coax you into settling for something less than what your company and its consumers need. After all, the goal behind your rebranding investment is to create a brand with longevity and effectiveness: if you’re settling, you’re not likely to accomplish that goal.
Tip #10: Don’t Stop with The Design Files.
Once you have your new branding elements, take the time to learn about how to integrate them for brand continuity and consistency across platforms. You have to learn to walk before you can run, right? The consistent and effective integration of your new branding elements is the key to the success that they can bring. Update your profile pictures, cover photos, campaign elements, website, and post consistently with your new branding in order to recreate your company’s image in the mind of your consumers.
So…Are You Ready?
Rebranding is the ultimate commitment to keeping your company fresh and relevant in the mind of consumers. The best part? There’s a real chance for substantial growth if done the right way with a professional designer and your consumer’s perspective at the forefront.
Of all the investments you can make in your company, your brand is by far one of the most important. Don’t cut corners on your image! We are ready to help you navigate the path to success in your rebranding journey! Are you ready?