What IS a brand, anyway?
Let’s discuss what a brand is so you know what you’re doing before you do it. A brand is not just a name, or a logo, or how you market your company. A brand is more about a company’s entire identity. Much of the time, your brand comes from what your customers think about your company. What they think of your company can often morph your brand, or even your product offering. It’s difficult to control your own brand, although you can start off with “suggestions” – a whimsical feel to your logo, website and customer service, for example, is more likely to give a customer that feeling.
Is it time?
Know that rebranding isn’t something you absolutely have to do. Just because you’ve been in business for a decade or two doesn’t mean you absolutely “need” to rebrand. If you’re failing to reach your target audience, that’s something incredibly important to consider, but it may not mean an entire rebranding is necessary. Why aren’t you reaching them? Are customers ignoring you, or are they not aware of you in the first place?
Coca-Cola rebranded themselves in 1985 with “New Coke” with a terrible reaction from the public. Within three months, “Classic Coke” was released, and “New Coke” was phased off the market. If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.
If it is broken…
Rebranding might be the right choice for you, but there are many aspects you should consider as you consider how to rebrand. Not just any rebrand will do.
First, you need to figure out what promises you want to use to influence your new brand and bring it to life. What do you want people to think of when they see your brand? What feelings are you shooting for? Obviously, you want them to be positive, but do you want them to be serious, silly, entertained, impressed? What expectations do you want your consumers to have? Most importantly, you’ll need to figure out what makes you different. Is it your customer service, your US-only employees or your amazing return policy?
Second, find a way to bring in some feedback. Whichever system you already have for obtaining feedback is probably fine, whether that’s email, your blog, phone calls or SurveyMonkey. Ask people what they think and what they expect when they see your new brand and your old brand side by side. Make sure you’re getting the right picture across.
Finally, be consistent—and very persistent. Sometimes you might feel regret when you start a rebrand, but once you’re on that path, it’s very hard to turn back. Stick to your guns. Keep going. That’s why it’s so important to do research first; you want to make sure that you are heading in a good direction before you start moving forward with a rebrand.
Rebranding can be very valuable, and it’s important to consider that when you start thinking about