Many brand experts have been quoted as saying that rebranding is harder than creating a brand. However, in some circumstances a rebrand just can’t be avoided.
If you are thinking about rebranding but aren’t sure whether the time is right (or you know the time is right but you just need to be persuaded to part with the time, cost and creative juices it requires), here are some of the rebranding triggers we’d suggest you keep an eye out for.
1. Your brand looks out of date
This is arguably the number one reason for a rebrand. If you wince when you look at your brand and know that it’s been allowed to sit there and grow old less than gracefully, it’s probably time to rebrand.
However difficult you find looking at your brand, you do have to remember not to throw the baby out with the bath water.
People know your brand, trust your brand and recognise your brand. This means you can’t totally reinvent yourself and lose the mental cache you’ve built up over your business’ lifetime. Speak to your clients/customers and find out what they like about your brand as these elements should be maintained.
2. Your brand has expanded
If you have grown (wither in terms of geography, product range or turnover) you may have outgrown your brand.
Your brand has to reflect who you are. It also needs to reflect where you are. If you are constrained by your brand or by the fact your brand was create to satisfy a different world, it’s probably time to rebrand.
3. Your brand doesn’t accurately reflect your brand values
Today more than ever your consumers want to buy into brands that share their own values. If your brand doesn’t accurately reflect what you stand for (despite the fact you have taken the time and effort to articulate your purpose, vision, mission, and values), it’s probably time to rebrand …
… Not least because you are missing out on customers/clients!
4. You look like everybody else
Over time certain industry sectors adopt certain brand traits. This may be subconscious or a deliberate ‘safety in numbers’ but it tends to cause confusion. Your customers/clients see a sea of similar fonts, similar colours, similar words and similar imagery. This makes it very hard for you to stand out.
If you can start to see similarity creeping in to your market, it’s probably time to rebrand. You need to make a stand and create something new, authentic, unique, and original, an identity that will put the spotlight back on you.
5. You’re going after a new audience
If you’re looking to attract a new audience but your branding doesn’t quite hit the right notes, it’s probably time for a rebrand.
But again there is both babies and bath water to consider. You don’t want to do something so radical that you alienate your existing customer base. The trick is to create a brand that appeals the full breadth of your desired market so you keep who you have and add who you want.
6. You have a new business following a merger, acquisition or demerger
New ownership or a new business needs a new brand as you will need to make it clear who you are and what you are.
If you have demerged you are legally obliged to make it clear you are no longer part of your previous structure.
If you have merged or bought a new addition to your business you need to work out if you’ll trade under a new name or adopts and refresh one of the legacy brands.
7. You want to reduce costs and increase efficiencies
If your business has brought in new brands via mergers or acquisitions you may now be managing an extensive brand portfolio. This is expensive and labour intensive so it may be time to bring everything back under a single brand.
While this will involve a great deal more than a standard rebranding, you will lose a lot of the administrative costs. You will also gain an opportunity to really concentrate on communicating the true essence of your business. This will help you crystallise your message and make your marketing machine more efficient.
8. You are extending your international reach
Different names and different colours mean different things in different parts of the world. If there is even the slightest chance that any element of your current branding could conjure negative associations in the countries you want to crack, it’s probably time to rebrand.
9. You need more of digital punch
Many brands were created when digital was probably viewed as little more than another marketing channel. Over the last couple of years digital has exploded to the point that it is almost certainly your most powerful and influential marketing channel. This means you need to make sure you look the part.
If you don’t feel the online version of your visual identify conveys the digital punch it should, it’s probably time to rebrand.
10. You’re dealing with bad press
If you have had to ride some bad press and want to make a fresh start with a fresh new look to override any ill will that may be subliminally associated with your historic brand, it’s probably time to rebrand.
11. A change of leadership
Sometimes a new leader brings a new personality and to ensure consistency, this needs to be articulated via your brand. If you have had a change at the top and a change of direction as a result, it’s probably time to rebrand.
If this blog has pulled any of these triggers for you, it’s probably time to rebrand. Why not give us call and we can explain how we can help you create the brand that will successfully take your business into the next phase.