Sep 29 , 2020
Depending on the current circumstance, it may or may not be time for a rebrand. Tanya Hall, CEO of hybrid book publisher Greenleaf Book Group, highlights four signs that signify your business needs rebranding:
• Your business is becoming “stale” (or your competitors are getting ahead of you quickly),
• You’ve just bounced back from negative publicity,
• Your market has shifted priorities, or
• Your market has never resonated with your brand in the first place.
Regardless of the reason, you’re here now and you’re looking to give your company a thorough rebranding. Here are six things you need to remember when you’re rebranding your business and some tools that can help you along the way.
1. Target Market
No matter what you change, always remember your core market. What is the common age group of your market? What are their interests? Take a look at other posts your customers engage with. The good news is that technology can streamline this process. Tracking engagements on your social pages via analytics software like Hootsuite and Talkwalker is useful in this regard. Remember, you don’t want to churn out content that won’t resonate with your target market.
2. Type of Rebrand
There are two kinds of rebranding. If you’re looking to evolve your business to match current trends, then what you need is a brand refresh. Think of it as a makeover. You can keep core elements of your original brand but tweak them to be more modern (see Mastercard example below).
Meanwhile, if you’re restructuring or your current branding isn’t doing it for you, then you’re looking at a full rebrand. In a full rebrand, you should be prepared to essentially build your image from the ground-up, including its objectives, strategy, core message, logo, and taglines.
One of the most essential parts of a brand is its logo. Rak Kamal, one of our writers here, refers to it as the "best way to communicate" with your market. After all, when customers think of your brand, your logo will be the first thing they recall. As such a logo doesn’t must intricately represent what your brand stands for too. Technology can help through brand design tools like Logo Design Studio Pro and Tailor Brands, as they have a library of assets that you can use to create or guide your design.
However, note that your new logo shouldn’t be too far from your current one. Your business already has an existing customer base that associates your brand with your current logo. If you rebrand it into something completely new, people will find it difficult to associate your new logo with your business.
Rebranding goes beyond changing your image. There are certain naming conventions you need to adhere to, depending on where you’re operating and what kind of business structure you follow. When naming a sole proprietorship or a partnership, for example, you have plenty of wiggle room so long as you’re not violating anyone’s copyright. However, if you’re closing your sole proprietorship during this rebrand and starting a limited liability company, your business name will have to include “LLC” or a similar title, and can’t contain words like “bank,” or “corporation” in it. International Trademark Lookup and similar sites have free trademark search tools you can use to conduct your research, ensuring that you’re not causing legal issues when you make the switch.
Check with your state to see if there are any limitations you should be following as well.
5. Its Announcement
If you’re rebranding, then your customers and partners have to know. Not only will this help them adjust to your new image, but it’s also a good opportunity to gather feedback before releasing the rest of your branding. Create a social media or blog post announcing your rebrand to generate excitement around the changes. Take advantage of technology by using content generation tools like Biteableor or content managers like MeetEdgar to optimize your social traffic. Tell everyone why you’ve chosen to take this direction. It's important that you get your message out to as many people as possible.
6. Its Implementation
Once you’ve successfully rebranded, you have to ensure that your changes are applied in every aspect of your business. To this end, it’s important to give your business a thorough auditing. This includes but is not limited to all business systems and marketing materials, such as cards, intranets, templates, and others. While there isn't specific software that can assist you with this, you can use cloud storages like Google Drive to make separate folders for the old and new materials or create a spreadsheet that can track systems you haven't checked. Leaving traces of your old branding behind will make you look disorganized and unprofessional, which is bad for your overall image.
Rebranding is tough work. You have to understand how your current market thinks and create material that will resonate with that. Still, a successful rebranding can do a lot of good for your company, and there are plenty of tools out there that can help. If you’ve exhausted all your options and nothing is working, a rebrand is the next best step.