Rebranding your business is always a tough call to make. But if you are considering the option you need to first understand why it is important, when is the right time to go for a brand redesign and what it will entail.
Let me explain rebranding with the help of an example of fashion. When you are in college, you dress up like your fellow batchmates, right? And then as soon as you start working in a professional setup, your dressing style changes drastically. Even if you are working in a start-up culture, you start dressing a bit more formally (or at least semi-formally). You wear ironed clothes, take care of your hair, and even your body language undergoes a significant amount of change. This is because the kind of people you interact with in a professional setup is entirely different than the ones you encountered in college. Which by extension, also means the kind of impression you want to create on your colleagues is different than that of college batchmates. What you are trying to do here is change your social identity and persona according to the people you engage with. Same goes for a brand.
If you are changing your brand’s personality, you need to put efforts into rebranding your business.
Just like enhancing your social image, your business venture also calls for a slight, moderate, or 360-degree change in its identity every few years.
By definition, Rebranding is the process of changing the corporate image of your business. The idea is to create a different and new identity for your brand, by giving it a new name, symbol, change in logo or even the company motto. Before you give any serious thought about rebranding your business, let’s first make sure whether your business needs it in the first place.
Rebranding your Business: The ‘why’ of it
Rebranding your business sounds like a cool idea – new logo, new design, new identity, new marketing strategy… but wait, why is it important again?
Well, look at it this way: as your business grows, what you do, and how you go about achieving it keeps changing.
With blooming markets, evolving consumer needs, changes in trends, and innovations in technology, you need to bring about transformation in how your audience sees and understands your business.
With the changes in society and your customer’s mindsets, you can’t be stuck with the old ways and old impressions. Imagine if the company that made sewing machines – USHA – had the same marketing strategy as it did in the 80’s. Do you think it could survive with such regressive thinking? (Check the image below)
The mindsets of the audience keep changing, and with that, your brand needs to adapt as well. This is where rebranding helps your business.
Let’s look at some other top brands that have gone through rebranding exercise over the years. Remember how Apple used to look 20 years ago?
Or in recent history, remember when Starbucks changed its logo? Then there is Pepsi, MasterCard, McDonald’s, and many such examples of leading brands who have changed their brand’s identity over the years.
Top 5 Reasons why your business needs rebranding:
- Rebranding helps you create a new btand persona
- It helps cater to a new set of target group
- It helps you stay ahead of market changes
- You can discover hidden potential in your business with rebranding
- You can also showcase your innovation
Remember how Housing.com spent a lot of money in rebranding their brand identity and also along the way created quite a buzz? That was quite a story for a few months! Once you are in sync with the rationale behind rebranding your business, you should then find a suitable time to do so.
Rebranding your business: The ‘when’ of it
There can be N number of reasons for you to consider rebranding your business. But when do you go about it? Should you change your brand identity today? Or should you wait for another 6 months? As abstract as it may sound, look out for ‘the signs’. Is your brand not attracting new customers? Have you changed your offering drastically? There are many such moments when rebranding will help your business. It also depends on your business operations, organizational goals, and the brand’s changing visions. Tech companies, fashion brands, FMCG & retail brands, recruitment companies, and creative agencies, are some of the industries that are constantly evolving. Such organizations need to consider rebranding as a major strategy to stay in the game.
Here are 6 events when you should go for rebranding your business:
1. Your customers need to see you differently
People change with changes in social evolution, lifestyle, economy, etc. And that means your customers purchase funnel changes too. A good time to have a brand makeover is when you learn that your customers don’t look at your brand as they used to. Maybe your brand is now ‘old school’ or your products are considered ‘unhealthy’. Whatever the case, if your existing customers are not happy with what your brand personality is, you need to change your brand’s personality.
A classic example of such changing customer perception was brought to light by Dabur India. Always perceived as a traditional brand, portraying the culturally strong Indian woman, Dabur made a hard-hitting statement with their Brave and Beautiful campaign. The brand changed their perception of Indian women by openly supporting female cancer patients who undergo chemotherapy and lose all their hair along the way. Their hair care range – Vatika became the brand for the millennium woman with a new look (including packaging) and a new brand ideology that speaks to the citizens of this evolved society.
Here’s another example of Old Spice and how they changed from being seen as a brand for mature, older gentlemen, to becoming a new and hip name catering to the young men of the millennium.
2. Your business has acquired/merged with other business
Every business undergoes changes in its operations or business model, over a period of time. When such changes happen on a large scale, like a major acquisition or a merger with another company, a revamped identity helps your audience identify with your new form.
When Hero Honda changed to Hero, they changed their logo, and even the font, followed by a new brand message.
They didn’t want to be associated with their old identity and also wanted to create a clear brand recall in their audience’s minds. Plus, a major rebranding exercise is also a way to announce yourself to the world. Remember how Hero did so with a TVC with A. R. Rahman composition that went viral? Check it out below:
3. You find yourself amidst clutter
With competition getting severe, you never know when you are surrounded by new brands and companies trying to steal away your audience. Remember when Nokia was THE mobile brand in India? What happened? Well, Samsung, One Plus, MI, and 10s of other companies emerged and stole away its audience. In such cases, it is immensely important to rethink your brand identity. Maybe it’s time to don a new look and introduce a new mantra for your brand. Rebranding your business will help you stand out amongst the clutter.
That’s what Snapdeal did recently. Ever since its launch, the e-commerce brand has faced strong competition from the giants like Amazon and Flipkart. Eventually, with a new brand message of #UnboxZindagi, they changed their avatar, their logo and reintroduced themselves to the world.
4. Your brand name does not resonate your entrepreneurial vision
It so often happens (especially in case of young startups) that you started with an idea which became your business objective at the moment. But with time, your vision changes and your business grows or your business pivots. In such cases, why should the brand that you created at the early stage of inception still remain the same? As the voice and face of your business, your brand needs to resonate your entrepreneurial vision and it has to accordingly change, if needed, to bring these elements together.
Let’s take the example of Godrej which rightly fits in this category. A traditional and generation old brand, Godrej is a name every Indian can relate to. However, with business expansion in the latter decades and catering to the millennium consumer, Godrej needed to bring about a fresh look that would resonate with the youth. From a bold red to a tri-colored logo of blue, green and maroon, the brand successfully conveyed its diversification into natural and organic products, real estate, and technology with a shift in brand ideology. It was no longer the boring, generation-old brand but it had evolved into a young & hip brand.
5. Your company does not attract top talent
Most companies would not take this seriously, but this is a classic sign that your brand identity needs to be altered. The crème talent of the market always wants to work with the best brands. If you are not inviting the top talent of the market to join you or they are not interested to work with you, then a brand research might be due to understanding why is that the case. And eventually, a change in your brand perception might be on cards.
Dropbox is a perfect example of this. It brought the most contrasting change in its brand image that the tech space has ever seen. From a simple cloud sharing platform, the brand evolved into a design sharing space, which was conveyed by dynamic, chromatic design to appeal to design enthusiasts and creative professionals. Such strong changes have helped Dropbox attract top talent.
6. You have launched new products/services
If you are in a business of constant innovation and you keep introducing new products that are at par with changing technology, market structure, and evolving needs of your customers, then rebranding is much needed for your business. By incorporating elements in your colour, logo or brand messaging, you let your audience know that you are doing something new and allow them to look at you with an entirely new perspective.
Modern Bread is one such brand that revamped its avatar for the younger masses. Introducing new variants in their bread craft, while donning a new look, Modern Bread intelligently made their way into the millennium society.
Rebranding your business: The ‘what’ of it
After all the ABCs of rebranding are considered, let’s move on the pre-final stage. What exactly does rebranding entail? Let’s assume you decide to change your brand’s identity. Now what? Here are the 4 steps you need to follow:
Step 1: First things first. Before you embark on your rebranding adventure, you need a brand audit, which helps you understand your audience and their current perception of your brand. A thorough analysis tells you if your brands need rebranding and to what extent. This is where a brand strategist can help. Professional brand experts and freelance brand consultants have the expertise and required know-how you would need to rebrand your business identity.
Step 2: Next step is to plan the rebranding activity. This includes changing name, redesigning the logo, rewriting the company motto, revamping the image, and even your product packaging if any. This entire project is the onus of a creative expert who gives shape to your thoughts and ideas.
Step 3: Once your new set of designs are ready, it’s time to evoke the interest of your TG. Hitting across the digital and traditional media ecosystem, with a teaser of what you are coming up with, will help them get a peep into your new avatar. This is where your social media and marketing expert can help you reach out to the right audience using the right channel.
Step 4: Once you get an initial reaction from your audience on your rebranding strategy, it’s time to implement your new brand across your products, marketing collateral and social practices.
On an ending note…
The last step is to go ahead and hire an expert who can help with rebranding your business. At InstaTaskers, you will find professionals who have worked with small business and big brands alike, to reshape a brand’s identity. Post a task on InstaTaskers.com and we’ll connect you with relevant folks.
Lastly, change is never easy. But that is the only constant. And so it goes for your brand. You need to keep your venture alive and kicking and in order to do that, you need to constantly evaluate and assess your brand’s identity.
And didn’t Socrates rightly said,
“The secret of change is to focus all your energy not on fighting the old but on building the new.”