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Is a Company Rebrand Worth the Investment?
By: Michael Packard
Why Rebranding is so Valuable for Growing and Scaling Your Business
There is a natural evolution within industries to adapt to economic changes and market trends that impact the way business is done; the “adapt or die” philosophy is especially poignant in this context, which is why a company rebrand often becomes a necessity to not just keep up, but to rise above the competition and stand out to your audience.
First, the Basics: What Does a Company Rebrand Entail?
Businesses often start down the road to a company rebrand by recognizing that they need [insert brand element here; i.e. a new website, updated messaging, a better way to reach their target audience.] From there, all the multiple elements involved in meeting the stated need begin to emerge, making it clear that a company rebrand is a real need.
These elements fall into two primary categories: brand messaging and brand identity. Each is critical for your rebrand as they help define your brand and its key functions:
- what your brand is and where it is going
- what your brand says
- how your brand says it
- who your brand speaks to
- what your brand looks like
- how you want to make people feel
- how you want to make people feel about your brand
Building out each of these functions in greater detail is done through the creation of a brand messaging architecture and visual brand identity. These pieces are standard for any rebranding exercise and are ultimately combined into a comprehensive brand guide that serves as a single point of truth for your brand, enabling consistency across every touchpoint.
Whatever your reason for rebranding, the components of your brand messaging and visual identity are crucial for ensuring you stand out with a differentiating value promise targeted at the right audience in the right way.
Why You Should Consider a Company Rebrand
Now that you know on a high level what a rebrand consists of, let’s talk about why it’s worth doing. And unsurprisingly, there isn’t just one reason why a company rebrand is a good idea. There are many.
We’re going to share a few reasons why you should consider rebranding your company, but first, we want to hammer home the most important driver for embarking on a rebranding process: it’s all about moving your brand forward.
A rebrand is about much more than a website redesign or applying a fresh look to sales materials. A rebrand defines your company and its place in the market and does so in a way that allows you to grow and scale without having to repeatedly reinvent your brand just to keep up.
Your messaging and visual identity are designed to evolve with your brand because they are created with buy-in from your company’s key stakeholders, and are informed by research into your industry, target audience, and competition. It is through this approach that your rebrand can sustain and support the future evolution of your brand.
With that said, let’s talk about when it’s a good idea to pursue a company rebrand:
- Accommodating a Change Within Your Company. A change within your company can be any number of things: a merger or acquisition, the sunsetting or introduction of a product or service, a domestic or international expansion – you get the idea. What each of these potential changes has in common is a need to revisit how your company presents itself to the world, and who your target audience is. Adding a new product or service, for example, may introduce a new user group you need to reach. Additionally, expanding to a new location may require you to adjust your brand to resonate with a different culture or appeal to a new demographic. Rebranding to accommodate a change will lead to greater success for your company as you undergo that shift, and in the long term.
- Making a Change in Focus or Priority. For example, brands are pivoting to place a greater emphasis on sustainability. For some brands, becoming more eco-aware can be a significant shift in focus and priority, but it’s one that is highly relevant and often requires a company rebrand to ensure authenticity around a sustainable promise. If your brand is starting to refine its messaging to reflect a new priority or focus, it’s time to consider a rebrand to help effectively communicate that story in the right way to the right people.
- Pursuing a More Simplified Approach Less is more, especially when it comes to your brand. You’ll be able to communicate more effectively through a more simplified messaging and aesthetic approach; it’s the way your audience digests information and it’s the approach your competition is using. For companies that don’t have internal marketing teams or a dedicated marketing effort, working with an agency like Fishnet can be highly beneficial to helping execute a more simplified approach to your brand. An agency will help you identify the most important information to convey and how to convey it, and create an aesthetic that reflects your brand, and helps uniquely identify it through modern, eye-catching, memorable, and engaging visual elements.
- Accommodating Negative Press While not a favorable reason to have to consider a company rebranding, it is one that does happen. Brands can take a serious hit from bad press, whatever the reason, making it nearly impossible to come back into the public eye without making any changes. This scenario has happened to some very well-known brands. You may remember Time Warner Cable – now known as Spectrum. The cable company under its original name became notorious for bad customer service and couldn’t quite recover from its negative reputation. It merged with Charter Communications (which was experiencing a similar problem) in 2017 to become Spectrum, a rebrand that allowed both companies to start fresh and rebuild customer loyalty.
A Rebrand Vs. A Brand Refresh
Without getting too in the weeds, it’s important to address the very important difference between a rebrand and a refresh.
A company rebrand, as we have detailed, is essentially a complete overhaul of your existing brand.
A brand refresh, on the other hand, is like a makeover. The original brand is maintained but is enhanced with fresh, updated messaging and a new visual aesthetic. A company may choose a refresh over a rebrand if the need is to simply achieve an updated look and feel and none of the other elements mentioned above apply.
A quick note about rebranding: sometimes, but not always, a company rebranding includes a name change.
Brands that have equity with their audiences and aren’t struggling to combat bad press or any other major roadblock to growth may choose to maintain their name – certainly, a new brand name requires additional effort to communicate the change to your audience and build up brand recognition.
Other Important Benefits of a Company Rebrand
While we have identified the pain points that typically motivate a company to consider a rebrand, there are other important benefits that are realized from rebranding.
- Strengthening your brand equity: A rebrand will establish consistency so your audience recognizes you and understands what your brand means for them. It also ensures your internal team reinforces that experience with the customer in how they represent your brand. A rebranding will ideally correct any brand elements that were previously taking away from building brand equity.
- Creating brand loyalists: As a result of a rebrand, the customers you have will like you more, and you will gain new customers. And the more happy customers you have, the more likely they are to act as evangelists for your brand, increasing your visibility and ability to grow.
- Rising above the competition: Your rebrand will give you a fresh place in the market that is well-informed by the competition. Success as a brand is in large part reliant on being able to fill gaps in the market and differentiate yourself from your competitors.
Are you ready to rebrand your company? Whatever your motivation, every brand needs to take stock of its place in the market at one point or another and assess whether it’s time for an updated, more competitive, highly targeted brand message and visual identity.
Let’s talk about your rebrand. Contact us today to start a conversation.
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