In some contexts, “rebranding” can almost seem like an admission of having done something wrong. But in fact, rebranding makes sense for many businesses, for a variety of reasons.
The fact is, consumers change, markets change, technology changes, and society changes. Rare is the business that can carry on today exactly the way they did in 1980. Rebranding is almost always a positive step forward, and when done well, it allows companies to keep their loyal customers while positioning themselves to gain new ones. Here are six tips for a successful rebrand.
1. Know Why You’re Rebranding
There are many reasons for rebranding, and most of them have to do with declining or stagnant revenues, or fears of irrelevance in a changing world. Once you know and can articulate why you want to rebrand, you can take all the other rebranding steps with this purpose in mind, and you’ll be less likely to veer wildly off track.
2. Gain Employee Buy-In for Consistent Messaging
Make sure everyone “gets the memo.” If your social media team is aware of the rebranding and is proceeding accordingly, but your blogging team hasn’t heard about it yet, you run the risk of inconsistent and possibly confusing content. Everyone must be on the same metaphorical page to ensure consistent messaging across all channels.
3. Ensure You Understand Your Audience as Well as You Think You Do
Who do you think your target audience is? Who are they actually? The bigger the gap between these two concepts, the more work you need to do before rebranding. Rebranding is, after all, about reaching people, and you have to know who responds positively to your brand. It may not be precisely who you think! Use your analytics to develop a clear picture of your target audience before launching your rebrand.
4. Be Ready to Correct Course When Necessary
Good planning can prevent many mistakes, but probably not all of them. Realize that there may be times during your rebranding campaign when you’ll make mistakes. Be prepared to own those mistakes and move forward. Correcting course doesn’t mean you’re on the wrong course. It just means you’re not steering as efficiently as you could be.
5. Don’t Forget Your Loyal, Longtime Customers
A major rebranding effort can be a bit alarming to your longtime customers. Will their preferred brand still be relevant to them? Assure them from the start that it will. Knowing who your long-term customers are and reassuring them that your rebranding effort will in no way abandon them is important for keeping them with you as you evolve.
6. Keep an Eye on the Competition
It’s always smart to see what the competition is up to, and how well it is succeeding. Your social media team should already be monitoring your competitors’ social media, and if they’re not, some tools make it easy to set up custom social streams. While you don’t want to let your competitors dictate your choices, you’re still wise to know what they’re doing and how well it is working.
Rebranding is the writing of a new chapter in your company’s history, and it should be an exciting process. Certainly, it requires hard work, but it pays off when you do it well. Don’t forget that even iconic brands like Kellogg’s and Guinness have gone through rebranding. It’s a nod to the reality of a constantly evolving world. PKG Brand Design is always on the forefront of new CPG branding and packaging initiatives; please subscribe to our blog for the latest package design industry news!