21 Nov Re-branding: Tips for successfully launching your renewed brand
With the end of the year and decade creeping up, you might be considering giving your brand a new look and a fresh start. Re-branding is done for a number of reasons from reputation to a desire to expand. Changing the face of your brand can, if done successfully, help you achieve a similar result and lead to new opportunities as well as business success. However, re-branding can be a lengthy process that often requires more work than meets the eye, not to forget the potential pitfalls that should be carefully considered in order to prevent your renewed brand from failing. How do you make sure you consider all the steps and make the right choices for your brand?
Do the research
For starters, consider what you are aiming to achieve. Re-branding should be driven by a certain goal, which in turn determines the kinds of changes and choices that will have to be made throughout the re-branding process. Is your company looking to expand to another market, market segment or niche? Has your reputation been hurt by recent events or do you simply think your brand is outdated?
Whatever the reason, make sure the re-branding processes is based on research. Look into what is needed in terms of re-branding to, for example, achieve successful market entry for your company’s industry. What appeals to buyers, clients and how can we achieve this with our brand refresh? What is the perception of your brand among current and new customers? Do we need a partial or total re-brand to achieve foothold in the new market or market segment? These are some of the questions you can and need to be asking yourself at the very start of the process.
Because re-branding can have such a tremendous impact on your company, it is important to consider the opinion of those who play a key part in the change process as well as those that will be impacted by the changes. Trying to determine a strategy from a single perspective and simply focusing on the customer’s point of view will make the re-branding effort prone to overlooking. Therefore, get a team of internal stakeholders together from various departments who, together, will establish an approach to re-branding based on goals and research.
Changing your brand
There are a number of elements that should be considered when re branding, something which can be overwhelming. However, starting with the re-branding ‘’basics’’ will get you a long way towards your end goal. Establish ‘consistency’ when communicating your brand by choosing a colour palette, the ‘story’ of your brand (i.e. mission, vision and slogan), a logo and typography. Whatever place or country you go, you’ll come across the same McDonald’s, Apple or Nike typeface and logo design. For these global brands, having brand guidelines enables them to create a consistent message across the board with minimal oversight required. While you might be operating on a smaller scale, documenting guidelines for these five key areas can be a valuable tool for truly establishing your renewed brand.
Communicating your renewed brand
Once you’ve determined all of the above, it’s time to think of finding the most effective way to communicate your renewed brand to the target audience. Making sure people know what’s going on with your brand is vital to ensuring awareness of your brand changes. Whether it’s a driver for re-branding or simply a part of the re-branding effort, finding a way to retain your existing customers or clients is as important as any other goal of your brand’s face lift. Therefore, determining an approach to communicating your brand should consider reaching out both your existing as well as the target audience.
Whatever approach to marketing communications you choose, rushing the process will never lead to anything good. An important lesson to keep in mind when re-branding is that the process will likely last beyond your first estimates. When communicating to existing customers and clients, focus on putting them ahead of anything else. This means moving and changing your brand at a pace that works for them as well as making sure that every change is effectively and clearly communicated towards them. Depending on the size of your audience, consider reaching out directly to let your customers know what’s changing and what they can expect from now on. For those who have growth aspirations, look at the most appropriate media channels and whether it’s worthwhile reaching out directly or using mass media channels.
Test, adapt & launch
Before actually re-launching your brand, make sure you test the above elements of your re-branding campaign. Doing so will help you see what still needs changing in order to ensure a smooth launch. For example, your messaging or the channel that you plan to use might not reach its intended audience as effectively as expected. Testing your strategy and intended execution will help you to solve these kinds of issues before they become major flaws.
Determining clear goals, conducting thorough research as well as testing your strategy and approach will help to ensure a smooth and successful launch of your new brand. While these steps go a long way, there is a lot that can be considered depending on the industry, the purpose and the strategy of your re-branding efforts.
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