There have been a couple of quite significant rebrands in the news recently – you’ve probably seen the arguments going on around the BBC one, and then there’s the one in which the Facebook brand has been encapsulated under the new ‘Meta’ umbrella.
I’ve worked on a lot of rebrand projects over my career. And yes, a lot of the time, the businesses I’ve done them for have had good reasons for doing so. Sometimes, they’ve grown to a point where they can afford something a bit nicer and a bit more appropriate for the direction they’re going in. Sometimes, they want to attract a different type of clientele. Sometimes they change direction and want to express who they’re becoming.
But how do you know when it’s time for a rebrand? When is it right to do it, and when should you leave it? What does it mean to rebrand, anyway?
I thought today that I’d share my insight on it from a graphic designer’s experience. Maybe it’ll help you decide what the best thing for your business brand is, and how far you should go in updating your branding.
What is branding, anyway?
More than just your logo, your brand includes everything that identifies you. Things like the colours you use, the style of your images, the fonts you use, even the tone and voice you use across your marketing.
Often, I’m asked by businesses to sort out their website – and while I believe that having a decent website for your business is a crucial part, it’s just as important to consider how the elements you select on your website will translate to other places. The colours and fonts used on your logo should be a big part of your web pages, your social media, and your print marketing, so that when people see your content, they instantly know it’s you. That’s what good branding does.
A bit about your brand name
Of course, your business name is also a big part of your branding – and one that often gets overlooked. I won’t dwell too much on it here, but it is worth a mention – as part of your branding, the name you choose should ideally give at least a hint of what you’re about.
When is it time to rebrand?
Following on from what I just said, if any element of your current branding fails to convey who you are, what you do, and the kind of person you’re trying to attract, then that’s a pretty good hint that you need to rethink your branding.
Some questions to ask might be:
- Is my current branding old-fashioned, outdated, or failing to attract new customers?
- Does my current branding hold a certain ‘reputation’ that no longer fits with what the business is about?
- Has my business evolved and grown in such a way that my current branding looks a bit off/amateur?
You might be in a position where the core of your branding works ok, but some elements of it need updating. Don’t feel that you have to have a total overhaul in order to get what you need. Sometimes you just need a refresh of your style, but the colours and tone you use could be fine. Consider what works, and what doesn’t.
7 steps to rebranding
- Look carefully at your current branding, and make a list of what you love, and what you don’t. Be critical, and think about how things look to an outsider – perhaps even ask some people to give their opinions (but not so many that you get tied in knots!).
- Look at your competitors. Write down some elements that you like, and how it compares to your own branding. Think about who their customers are – are they similar to yours? What do you think attracts those people to your competitors?
- Approach a designer – if possible, set up a meeting to talk about your vision for your rebrand. This is an important step, because designers are well versed in branding, and can give you great advice on what works, what’s contemporary, and how things could work within your particular business.
- Set a realistic budget and timeline with your designer so that you can meet your objectives.
- Plan your launch – use the opportunity to remarket your business so that as many new people as possible see what you’re about. Don’t be shy about it – celebrate your new branding for maximum impact.
- Measure and monitor – identify any glitches where further improvements might be needed.
- Remember; change is never easy, but sometimes it’s an essential part of your business growth and evolution.
Are you thinking about rebranding, or do you have questions about your current branding? Give me a call – I’d be happy to help.