You’ve set your business up, created a logo, chosen colours and fonts, that’s it right? That’s your brand and your business. During your business journey, you start to hear about rebrands. Why do companies rebrand themselves? Surely that’s just for the big companies, like Coca Cola? A rebrand can be a perfect choice for many companies, freelancers, and small businesses.
Companies need to rebrand for a whole host of reasons. In this article we will explore why companies rebrand themselves and what makes a successful rebrand.
What is a rebrand?
Firstly, let’s look at what a rebrand consists of. A corporate rebrand is a marketing strategy that involves a company changing its identity and image. It can even involve reevaluating your company’s culture and how your business works. Brand identity is important for businesses, particularly those with clients. It is what sets you apart from your competitors and can help your customers to distinguish you within your market.
Your corporate identity is easily recognisable from design features that will run across all your products and services, communications materials and platforms. This includes your logo, brand colours and typography, and is supported by your style guides and graphics.
How do you know when it is time to rebrand?
There is no definitive answer to this question. Many brand strategies run for up to ten years. Inevitably, at the end of that period, leaders may start to ask whether it is time to consider a corporate rebrand. But what if you’re an SME or freelancer? When should you see your existing brand as past its date? Below are some great indicators that now is a good time to rebrand.
Is your brand image looking tired and out of date?
If your logo, website, or printed materials are looking past it, it won’t provide your business with a modern image. This is important to keep up to date with your audience and be relatable. It helps keep your products and services looking attractive. If you’re given the opportunity to deliver a presentation, do you want a tired, lifeless presentation? Or one that provides you with a strong brand image that is memorable and eye catching?
Businesses may choose to revamp an existing brand after a merger or acquisition. If your company has just acquired new management, or decided on a new direction, then it is the perfect time to rebrand and relaunch into your market.
Do you need to revisit your brand’s reputation?
A crisis or PR disaster may lead to suggestions that it is a good time to revisit your public image and try to win back some support. For example, BP famously rebranded to divert attention away from a costly and environmentally damaging oil spill in the Mexico Gulf and promote a greener agenda. This can be a risky strategy, and it’s important that rebrands in this context are accompanied by a positive vision for your company and its future.
You may be an established business, without any damage occurring to your reputation, but still find yourself losing customers. Perhaps you are not gaining new customers and would like to provide your company with a strong brand image to attract new business.
Do you wish to assert a position in a new market?
A good example of this is Old Spice’s rebrand away from an older market to a youthful and modern audience, led by a humorous marketing campaign. If you need to reposition, a rebrand will help to get you there. One of my fav ads of all time:
If you are keeping an eye on your competitors and notice that they have a fresh, professional approach, you should boost your branding game. You should also keep an eye on the trends of your audience. If their needs have evolved, your branding needs to as well.
Refreshing a brand design can help you connect to new audiences and appeal to a broader demographic. Alongside telling the story of your company, creating a strong brand sets you apart from other companies in your sector or industry. This means ensuring you have an original voice and a modern image that is memorable. Your company can then communicate a consistent message to your clients and the broader public.
The reality is that you should be constantly assessing the strength of your brand’s strength and relevance to your target market. Knowing how your customers feel about your company is critical for this process. Ensuring your brand is fit for purpose across all channels, especially with emerging technologies like apps and new online marketing opportunities, is essential for visibility.
A seamless consistent brand look
A rebrand can help you to achieve a seamless consistent brand look. Perhaps you have new products or services you want to include in your brand hierarchy and a refresh will help to achieve that. If you have too many suppliers creating your visuals or messaging, it will result in an inconsistent brand across your marketing channels.
Perhaps you don’t have a brand strategy or guidelines currently? It’s important to get your brand messaging seamless so your messaging is clear for your audience. Brand guidelines will help you and your team to achieve a more consistent look, which will help your audience to instantly recognise your business. It will help your employees to behave and interact with customers.
What are the benefits of rebranding a company?
A rebrand can help define your brand’s promise and communicate who you are and what you stand for. An iconic example of this is Apple. Under the leadership of Steve Jobs, who named the brand because of his fondness for the fruit and because he felt it represented simplicity, the famous Apple logo was the second iteration for the company.
Bringing on a graphic designer to design a new logo prior to the launch of the first computer was a bold move. He was asked to create a simple design to capture the essence of Job’s intention for the company. The logo became central to the success of the products and later capturing of the public’s imagination.
Are you ready to rebrand?
I hope this article has helped you to understand why companies rebrand themselves, as well as noting the benefits of a fresh look for your company. A successful rebrand can offer several advantages for your business. Design is an important tool that can help even small companies to carve a niche and create an impact.