When you start a business, you dream of making it perfect from day one, with no obvious need to change in the future. You envision a brand so flawless that it stands every test of every time it lives through, no matter how many generations it greets. However, sometimes change is not only an option to help your brand grow, but a necessity. It can become apparent due to a slowly decreasing number of followers and customers, or by the way novel brands manage to engage with the same audience more effectively than you.
Hints can come from various places, but the sooner you notice your brand is out of place, the better your chances are to recover through a rebranding effort. As soon as you realize that you need to rebrand in order to meet the needs of an ever-changing marketplace, you need to brace yourself for the nuanced and complex strategy necessary for a successful rebrand. Here to help you meander through the murky waters of this process is a simple guide made of the most essential rebranding steps for your business.
Start with a comprehensive brand audit
Much like you need a set of clear guides and goals to start a brand from scratch, a rebrand needs its foundation as well. This base typically starts with an assessment of your current brand strengths, weaknesses, potential growth opportunities, and any ongoing issues that might affect your future brand image. Such an audit is an absolute must for any brand to rebuild itself, even if you end up using much of the same material such as the same core logo, and the same essential voice. Some brands need refining only, while others need a complete revamp: your audit should be able to point you in the right direction.
Evaluate your value proposition, your mission and vision, how well they integrate into your business strategy and your offers, and how your internal organization reflects all of the listed. Analyze your existing customer base, how well you’ve established a relationship with them, and what you need to do in order to maintain those bonds through the rebrand, and expand your customer base further.
Define your market and your goals
Now that you have a clear view of everything that makes your brand, you also need to understand its position in the market, as well as its potential position. After all, market changes are often the ones that drive brands to change their image and their presentations. More often than not, not following the tempo of market growth and development leads brands to the point of no return, or the point when they decide to move forward in a different form.
This is precisely the key element to help you refine your future brand’s goals. Even if you have been successful so far in achieving everything you set out to do, a fresh brand in a changed market position should be able to have clearer goals and a stronger presentation in order to avoid a similar issue in the future. As you sift through all this data, you’ll also discover any potential risks of the rebrand, as well as the optimal budget you’ll need to assemble for the process to take place.
Mind all the marketing details
A rebranding strategy is such a complex procedure that even the smallest, one-person operations risk to lose sight of certain aspects of day-to-day operations. This issue only amplifies in case of a major corporation where you need to deal with internal policies and helping your employees adjust to the new brand and how best to represent it. What about all those office designs you’ve personally created? When you change your colors and logos, everything needs to reflect those changes.
Companies will rely on business printing services to create new brochures, flyers, new business cards, and all other marketing collateral in bulk for their employees in order to make the transition as smooth as possible. When it’s time to launch your strategy, you need to have all those banners, posters, and other promotional materials ready to show off your new brand in all of its glory. The same applies to your social media voice, your website, and all other platforms where your brand is present.
Ensure brand-wide consistency
Consistency is not an issue reserved for marketers. While this is where it becomes most prominent when your experts fail to stay true to your new brand voice, every single aspect of your company needs to be fully rebranded before you can consider the effort a success. Have you prepared proper training and workshops for your employees at every level? They also need to brace for the incoming changes. They might also be invaluable sources of information and feedback on how to improve your brand culture during the rebrand.
What about your partners and other external collaborations? How well do they fit into your new image? While it might seem difficult to break off certain long-lasting bonds, you need to put your brand first and ensure that your new identity is reflected in every form, including your external and internal communication.
Execute, monitor, adjust
Finally, you will need to take the leap at some point. When the time comes to start rolling out all of those complex, intricate changes, be prepared for mishaps, issues, and setbacks. Weave contingencies all throughout your execution strategy so as to prevent or at least treat issues in a timely manner and without hurting the launch in its entirety.
Since no rebrand can happen over night, you also need to make sure you stay open-minded when it comes to spotting opportunities to improve on the go. You may have missed certain details that will surface during the rollout, hence the need to stay flexible and adjust your execution accordingly.
Rebranding is an arduous, complex task that requires every business to put its best foot forward. Use this guide to simplify the process and make sure that you find a position that will help your new brand identity thrive.
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Keith Coppersmith is a business and marketing expert who has experienced both the rise and fall of many businesses. As a regular contributor at BizzmarkBlog, he enjoys writing and providing insight into the marketing industry based on both practice and theory.
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