I was talking to someone the other day –let’s call him Bob–sharing with him what I do. As soon as I mentioned the branding part, Bob asked: ‘What’s the point of it?’
Before I could answer, he went on to explain that he’d seen several companies, clients of his, who had had a rebrand, which –in his opinion– proved pointless. All that the companies seemed to get after spending not inconsiderable amounts of money (according to Bob), was a new logo.
Now, I’m pretty sure this wasn’t completely the case in terms of deliverables, but I know what he was getting at.
In the media, we regularly see stories of big corporations spending millions on their brand, then some of them changing their logos back after only a few days due to a bad reaction from the public.
There are lots of misapprehensions about branding. Branding is not just about a logo, or a flashy front end. It’s about the whole way your company communicates with the world and is perceived.
We’ve covered many of the individual areas in this post but I want to address a few false reasons why companies think they need a rebrand, which will help, especially if you have to convince others in your company to pursue a new brand.
Here are three main reasons that are not good enough in themselves to rebrand…
1. Your logo is old and makes you look out of touch
It is possible to change your logo without having to complete a full rebrand. Your logo is NOT your brand. I can’t stress this enough and it’s the mistake Bob made above. The logo is just one part of your brand –albeit a very visible part.
If you are already clear and confident in your vision, values, brand personality and who your target audience is, then you can update your logo without having to start from scratch assessing all those elements again.
Naturally, you’ll still need to have various company assets re-designed, to incorporate the new logo, and the size of the company will dictate how big a job this will be.
2. Your competitors have just rebranded
This again is not a good enough reason on its own to rebrand. If your business is doing well, and your customers are responding to your offering, there’s no point in changing things just for the sake of following your competitors.
If there are clear issues going on, i.e. you have a bad reputation with your customers for legitimate reasons and you want to address this by distancing yourself from the past, or perhaps you’re moving into a new market and your brand is very focused on one specific market, these are good reasons to think about a rebrand.
Your competitors may have their own issues to address, which you may not know about.
3. You need to upgrade your long-in-the-tooth website
Many clients in the past have used wanting a new website to kickstart their thinking about their whole brand. In fact, this is why we developed The Clarity Programme, after being contacted by companies wanting to have their website redesigned but who didn’t have enough clarity on their whole business for us to produce an effective website.
We often needed to delve much further into the business vision and goals. We needed to discover just who their target audience were, what were the problems the business was solving for them and how did their goals for the website tie in with the larger business goals, and many more questions besides.
We found that many clients weren’t as clear on this as they thought they were. Providing a workshop that helped them discover these was key –before getting to the point of updating their long-in-the-tooth website.
In and of itself, it’s not a good enough reason to rebrand, but it can be a catalyst to kickstarting your thinking around who you –as a business– really are and why you do what you do.
Find out if you need to rebrand
Rebranding can be an expensive business depending on how old your company is and how big it is. You really need to make sure you have good solid reasons as to why you need to go through with it.
Bob couldn’t understand the point of it, as all he was looking at was the logo or visible front end. But branding is so much more than that.
Make sure you go into it with the right reasons, not just because your logo feels old, your competitors have recently updated their branding or you feel you need a new website.
Rebranding has the power to change the way your customers perceive you, to help you target a new audience, to help customers engage with you once more. It cannot work miracles, and has to be strategically thought through to affect all of your business, not just the front end customers may see.
If you want to find out whether you need to rebrand, our Clarity Assessment will help you achieve this.