“Every success story is a tale of constant adaptation, revision, and change.” – Richard Branson
Running a business is difficult, branding is likely the last thing on your priority list. Rightly, it’s hard to sit down and flip through colours and fonts when you’re still trying to figure out the USP of your product, who your customers are, and where to find them. Plus, if you made creating an identity for your brand a priority, in the beginning, a slight change in your perspective or the business plans might make your initial branding strategy obsolete.
Branding like business grows with time. In business, you add new products, explore new markets, target new demographics, and want to pursue a new set of customers. All these developments require companies to come out with a rebranding strategy. Like a makeover, rebranding allows the product to be seen in a new light, tailored to the current business plan.
So, officially, ‘rebranding is the process of changing the corporate image of an organisation. It is a market strategy of giving a new name, symbol, or change in design for an already-established brand. The idea behind rebranding is to create a different identity for a brand, from its competitors, in the market.’
However, the true definition of rebranding is often misinterpreted. Rebranding is much more than a name change, redesign, or new logo. It is readjusting your company’s vision, mission, values, and market to the current reflection of your brand.
When Should You Consider Rebranding
- New Locations – Rebranding is an ideal choice for your brand if you are planning to expand your product in domestic or international markets. Every city has its quirks and might not identify with your current logo, messaging, etc.
- Market Repositioning – Brands are designed to connect companies with their customers, so if you are planning to reposition your business to target a completely new customer profile – whether through product, place, price, or promotion – your brand will need to follow suit.
Example: Vicco created magic in the Indian market during the early 80’ and ’90s but over years with the same packaging and old customer base they became dated. But in mid-2019, by associating with Alia Bhatt and playing up the ‘natural’ aspect of its brand portfolio, they underwent a rebranding exercise in an attempt at connecting with a younger generation.
- New Philosophy – Your company’s mission, vision, and values should govern every decision you make — including every business and brand decisions. If these building blocks are shifting and pivoting the direction of your business along with them, you’ll need to reevaluate your strategy hence your brand’s identity.
- Mergers & Acquisitions – When two companies come together so do two brands. If your company was acquired or joined with another company, you can’t just let both brands battle it out. Rebranding helps find a new brand that reflects the new entity to prevent confusion and build trust.
When Should You Not Consider Rebranding
- Attention – In difficult times when sales are floundering, or perhaps brand awareness efforts are going in vain, either way, jumping to rebrand is the wrong move. Following a trend can be beneficial because it shows you are awake in a sleeping industry, but it is also a dangerous game. Changes without backed by strategy might create short-term buzz, but won’t be able to sustain the sale. At worst, you’ll lose whatever brand recognition you had, setting back your sales and marketing efforts.
- Boredom – People often consider rebranding because they’re sick of seeing the same logo, colour, font, and messaging every day. But what might make you feel restless and bored might resonate with your customers. It is the consistency that helps customers remember your brand.
- Covering Up A Crisis – Rebranding as a response to persistent internal issues or fending off the bad press is a bad idea. Today’s consumers and employees are smart enough to see right through the act and recognize it for what it is – a cover-up.
- Ego Boost – Rebranding is the fastest way to make your mark but that doesn’t justify implementing it. Visual elements are a major component in telling your brand’s story, but there are much better ways for the CEO to put their “stamp” on the company. Rebranding is costly and time-consuming, so they should answer important questions like does the company still match the brand personality and communicate its current position?
Total vs. Partial Rebranding
By this time, you must have figured out, if you should rebrand or not, if your answer is ‘yes’, the next question is to what extent. Complete or partial. For a better understanding, what’s at stake, let’s take a partial rebranding as a quick touch-up while the total rebranding as a complete makeover.
With the partial rebranding, you adjust the focus on your visual identity to suit the needs of the markets — as opposed to a complete identity crisis. While complete rebranding comes into play in cases of extreme shifts of a company’s mission, vision, and values. This option is suited to situations like mergers, acquisitions, and other similarly foundational shifts.
Rebranding is a powerful idea but it is important to understand that the more established your brand is, the more you have to lose.
Are You Ready to Rebrand?
Now that you know every pro and con that rebranding entails, it’s time to consider if and how you want to rebrand your own business. Whether you end up going with a logo redesign, a website redesign, refreshed messaging, or a complete brand makeover. Once you have determined the best strategy, it’s time you get in touch with professional branding agencies like Vowels to make your vision come true.
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