How to Rebrand Your Company for Business SuccessAug 04, 2021
Building a brand is vital for any business. It’s easy to think of it as just your logo or the color theme you use in business materials, but branding is so much more. It creates the first impression of your business, and you want to be sending all the right messages. What if you wanna change your brand? How to rebrand your company for business success?
Whether you’re just starting out or you’ve been running a business for a while, there are always opportunities to redefine your brand identity. Brand identity is a term that includes the following components:
- Visual brand identity: This refers to the visual elements of your brand, so logos, colors, fonts, imagery, etc.
- Brand voice: This is the tone you use as a company to communicate with the public. It could be authoritative, conversational, cheeky, etc.
- Brand values: These are typically a set of guiding principles that shape every aspect of your company.
- Brand personality: This is a set of characteristics that makes your brand feel more human and allows people to better relate to your brand.
- Brand message: Overall, your brand message should incorporate the above components and move people to patronize or partner with your company.
So what exactly is rebranding? Rebranding is a marketing strategy in which you would change major parts of your brand identity listed above. For example, you may redesign your company logo, develop a new slogan, or refresh materials such as a website or sales brochures as part of a rebranding effort.
It can be a lot of work, but rebranding is beneficial to a company in several ways. It can mark a new chapter for your business in the eyes of your employees, customers, competitors, and stakeholders in myriad ways. This change can help move a company past failings or reputation issues. It also can serve as a sign of growth and success, such as your business expanding into new products, services, and locations. If your business has been around for decades, there’s a chance your branding could use a modern refresh to make it more engaging and interesting to customers while setting you apart from the competition.
Whatever the reason, rebranding a company isn’t an overnight or free process. It takes time, planning, and funds to ensure you’re setting yourself up for success. As your small business grows, you want to be sure it has an identity that consumers can recognize, remember, and connect to on a personal level. It also should accurately represent the product or service you provide. In time, a brand also reflects the reputation your company has built, so you want to be sure your business is being represented in the best possible light. Whether you’ve been in business for one day or one decade, rebranding your company could be the key to unlocking even higher levels of success.
What’s in a brand?
When you start a small business, you get to define nearly every aspect of it, from the name to the products to the look and feel of its physical space. For many, the topic of branding might not land at the top of your to-do list when first starting out, but it’s an incredibly important part of a business at any stage.
Think about your company’s current brand. Is it reflective of a successful business or is there room for improvement to better represent your company?
Your company’s brand identity is more than just your logo or a snappy tagline. It’s the colors you incorporate into documents. It’s the tone of writing you use to describe products. It’s the company shirt your employee wears while they greet customers. At the end of the day, these elements and more comprise your brand identity. Branding sets the tone for customers recognizing your business and interacting with it it.
Branding is powerful because it not only represents your company’s identity but its reputation and authority. At the end of the day, what do you want to be associated with your brand?
What does rebranding involve?
The answer to this question will be different for every business. One business might just want to change its logo while another may want to change its name and brand identity entirely. You might fall somewhere in between.
If you’re not sure what you need to rebrand, here’s a list of questions to ask yourself to help determine which part of your brand identity could be elevated.
- Who is your ideal customer? Knowing your customer will help define—and redefine as their needs change—many aspects of your branding identity.
- What kind of problems do your products or services solve? When you’re helping customers, what words come to mind? Are you providing peace of mind? Convenience? These words can be used to shape your branding.
- What is your competition doing? Rebranding could put you at the front of the pack—or help you catch up and stand out if you feel like you’ve fallen behind the competition.
- How are you different? The things that set your company apart could be big elements of your brand identity. Are you currently leveraging them for success?
- What’s your story? If your path to business ownership is an inspiring one, incorporating it into your brand can help people connect to and support your business. For example, people might see your company more favorably if you frame your business as a lifelong dream rather than a chance to make money.
- How is your current brand identity performing? If people have trouble remembering your company name or don’t seem to recognize your logo, it might be time to invest in a more compelling brand identity.
These questions are just a starting point, but they can help you begin to brainstorm ideas and start identifying parts of your brand that you want to change. Then you can decide if you want to pursue a brand refresh or a total rebrand.
A brand refresh is a smaller-scale rebrand that tweaks existing elements of your brand identity. It could involve refining your logo, trying new corporate colors, or integrating new fonts. It changes the details of your brand identity but not the entire thing.
A total rebrand, on the other hand, is a redesign and restructuring of your brand identity. Remember those five elements of brand identity? You’re shaking all of them up in order to forge a new identity for your company—and that can take a lot of time and energy.
What should I keep in mind if I want to rebrand my company?
Rebranding is an intentional effort that should be approached with robust discussion and planning. Once you’ve determined what you want to change about your company’s brand identity, you’ll need to understand the pros and cons of making these changes. Remember, your brand is your ambassador to the customers and beyond. There’s a real chance not all the changes you make will be well received so you’ll need to weigh the risks against the benefits rebranding will bring.
Project management is important. You’ll need the right person or team to take your rebrand from brainstorming to implementation. The longer you pursue a rebrand, the more you might find that brand identity is wrapped up in nearly every aspect of your company. The work of updating all those pieces can be time-consuming. For example, if you decide to change your logo, then you’ll need to identify every place you use it. That means business cards, social media channels, your website, company stationery, advertisements, promotional gear, signage—you get the picture.
But before you dive into changing up your brand elements, keep costs in mind. Rebranding can be an expensive effort depending on the scale of the project. A simple logo update might only take a few hours of a graphic designer’s time while a total rebrand takes months and involves dozens of people across multiple teams.
If your company is large enough, you might be able to keep the work in-house and have it led by your marketing or communications employees. If you don’t have an entire marketing team at your disposal, many companies reach out to consultants and creative firms to help coordinate rebranding efforts.
No matter the size of the project, the key to a successful rebrand is that you need to be consistent and complete. You can’t keep the old branding around in some places because you don’t think people will notice or you don’t think the cost of replacement is worth it. Rebranding means replacing the old with the new. A mix of branding will confuse customers and reflect poorly on your business. When you commit to rebranding, you need to commit to moving fully into this new chapter of your business.
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