Fri, May 20 2016
If you’ve never rebranded a company before, it’s tempting to believe that it will be a fun process. After all, you get to pick out colours, fonts, and logos. You’ll get a new explainer video, have a launch party, and design t-shirts. That sounds exciting!
Anyone who has rebranded a company before knows better. These fun parts are actually a very small portion of the actual rebranding process, and the important parts - like research, communications, and internal marketing - can be painful if you don’t know what to expect.
With all that in mind, we wrote this post to help you better understand how you can do a rebrand right, with as little pain and hassle as possible. If you have any questions or need someone to help you with a rebrand, just say hello to firstname.lastname@example.org!
If you’ve never rebranded a company before, the key word here is “process.” If you’re working with a branding firm to hammer out the details, that will give you a big leg up, but how do you ensure that all of these changes are implemented and executed on appropriately? Ideally, your branding agency would help with this as well, but here’s a checklist for you to better understand the ideal process to rebranding your company:
Don’t even consider a rebrand until you’ve done extensive research. Make sure that you understand your brand, your customers, and your market better than anyone else. Make sure you’ve effectively identified your brand’s niche and know how you will go to market in that vertical. You’ll likely get some help in this department by your branding firm, but you should make sure that you’re just as informed as they are. Make sure you research all of the following:
All it takes to screw up implementing a rebrand is one director with an axe to grind. This is where communication and internal politics can derail your best-laid plans. Prevent this by effectively communicating with all relevant stakeholders throughout the entire process. From the very beginning of the rebrand, you should communicate all of the following in writing to all stakeholders:
This will help keep everyone in the organisation on the same page and assist you later when you roll out the brand.
Remember when I said you should communicate in writing? There’s a reason for that. You need to make sure that you have documentation on everything you do during the rebrand process. It’s vital that you have this information in case something goes awry. In the ever-changing world of rebranding a company, the last thing you can afford to do is leave specific changes or decisions undocumented. We recommend using a tool like Evernote complemented with an inbox folder for all things brand related.
There’s no reason to rebrand if you can’t roll the new brand out with style. Start by getting your employees excited so they can act as brand advocates. This can be done in several ways - and best practices vary by size of your organisation – but regardless of what tactics you choose, getting this stage right is essential to success. A few ways companies successfully roll out new brands include:
Each brand roll out is different, but one thing remains the same across every rebrand. No rebrand ends with the marketing department. A rebrand is pervasive throughout your entire organisation. Make sure to hire a professional branding firm to help you manage your brand roll out effectively.
The final – and most critical – component of the rebranding process is ongoing. Once you’ve built and launched a new brand, you need to defend it at every turn. People will want to mess with your messaging, corrupt your colour palate, and lose your logos, but you need to stand firm with the decisions you made. If you can’t defend your brand after it launches, you’re losing the most valuable asset your brand has – continuity.
If you’re just starting the rebranding process, check out our free brand audit to help you get started. If you’re ready to start implementing a rebrand, we’re happy to talk! Check out some of our work and reach out if you want to learn more!
Author: Tim Hickle, resident Digital Marketing Strategist at MilesHerndon.