Thinking about refreshing the branding strategy for your company? Before you head to the design table to create a new logo, it’s best to reflect on your reasons to rebrand your company. Without a plan, going through the process of rebranding may be the worst business move you ever make. Done right, it could be the smartest.
Let’s take a close at rebranding, including what it is, how it works, and whether you should do it.
What Is Rebranding?
Rebranding is the process of changing the public image of a company or organization. The process is undertaken for different reasons and depends on the goals of the organization and the expected results.
Rebranding a company may involve different methods and procedures, from merely changing the company name and logo to redefining the entire mission, or even reinventing the company from the ground up. In many cases, rebranding is implemented as a way to correct negative public perception and present the company in a new and more favorable light.
When Should You Rebrand?
There are many reasons why companies opt to rebrand. In some cases, it’s simply in an effort to shed an unfavorable reputation after a PR scandal. In others, it’s done in an attempt to distance the company from a competitor.
Whatever the reasons for rebranding, the decision isn’t something to take lightly. Rebranding is always time-consuming and resource-intensive. There is also a risk of having the campaign backfire. If it does, you put your company’s future in jeopardy.
Successful rebranding often involves defining the company’s purposes and objectives clearly. Having a clear-cut idea of your goals enables you to chart a practical course of action and to focus your efforts.
Here are some valid reasons to undertake a rebranding campaign:
- To modernize the company’s image
- To drum up publicity for a new company direction
- To announce a new line of products
- To correct negative public perception
- To offset negative publicity in the wake of bankruptcy or dissolution of a partnership
Decide On Your Mission
The first step is to outline your company’s mission. What are you trying to achieve by rebranding? Answering this question will help you determine whether rebranding is the proper course of action.
Now would also be the ideal time to decide if you should undertake partial rebranding or go all out and reinvent your brand from the ground up. Revamping your entire brand is the more costly option. However, it also has more significant potential for perceivable results.
Research Your Market
Thorough research into your market will help ensure the success of your rebranding campaign. Proper research involves finding out what your customers think about your brand or product. You should also identify what they want or expect and what alternatives they prefer, if any. Make sure to look into what your competitors are doing so you will have a more solid basis for your campaign.
One company that has realized the value of research firsthand is Domino’s. After years of being belittled as a company that produced pizza only fit for late night binges, the company set about polishing its tarnished image. After extensive research, Domino’s launched a massive rebranding campaign that included new commercials, online videos, increased web/social media visibility, and an expanded menu. As a result, the company’s fortunes turned around. Domino’s registered a 14.3 % increase in sales – all during a slump in the pizza delivery business.
Redesign Your Logo
The logo is one of the most powerful representations of a brand. Any rebranding campaign should focus on making the new logo as compelling and memorable as possible.
Designing a new logo is a great way to recreate your visual identity, but you don’t necessarily have to discard your old logo entirely. Many companies have managed to reinvent themselves successfully by utilizing a ‘tweaked’ version of their old logo.
Again taking Domino’s as an example, the new logo still bears the same colors seen in the original design. But the graphic has been trimmed down to signify new additions to the menu. This helps move away from the visual association with pizza. The logo is still immediately recognizable to longtime customers, yet it reflects a new direction and shift in focus for the company.
Other companies’ logos have changed significantly over time. From 1898 to 1940, Pepsi utilized varying styles of the hand-lettered script as its logo. This design remained in use until 1950, when the now-familiar red, white and blue color motif first appeared. Throughout the 20th century, the company employed different variations of the red and blue circle with a white band running across it, a stylized version that represents the brand today.
Whichever way you design your logo, always keep the following in mind:
- Keep it simple
- Ensure that it reflects your company’s values
- Weigh the relative merits of including or omitting your company name
- Design horizontal and vertical versions
- Define guidelines for how your logo should be used
These steps will ensure that your logo adequately represents your updated brand and shows it off to its advantage.
Redesign Your Website
In many ways, your website serves as your company’s public “face.” It’s a primary channel of interaction between you and your audience. For this reason, your site should be as appealing as possible, including all of its content. Always strive to make your website user-friendly. The goal is to provide your visitors with a rewarding and satisfactory experience.
Your website provides you with an opportunity to bring together the various components of your rebranding campaign. Every aspect of your new brand persona should be apparent in the textual and visual elements of your site.
Color can make all the difference. One rebranding strategy that has proven to be beneficial for many companies is to utilize the same color palette used in their logo. This uniformity in color serves as a subtle but powerful visual cue that establishes a relationship and cohesion between the brand and the website. This design strategy also enhances brand recall, making the company much more recognizable all over the internet.