A rebrand is a total overhaul of your business look, feel and positioning. Exciting? Absolutely. Daunting? It doesn’t have to be. Here’s how to plan and execute a rebrand.
Before you can roll out your beautiful rebranding campaign to the world, there’s lots to be done behind the scenes to make sure your approach is on point. Businesses rebrand once every 7-10 years on average, so it’s worth taking your time and planning every step in detail.
From positive reasons, like stratospheric growth or a successful merger, to problem-solving rebrands following negative coverage or a dip in engagement, there are many situations that prompt a corporate rebrand.
One thing is for sure though – because of the effort involved and the impact a change of brand can have, a rebrand should always be a strategic move that’s carefully considered. Before deciding if it’s the right step for you, it’s a good idea to dig deep into the reason you want to rebrand and explore other approaches to make sure a rebrand is the best solution.
For many businesses, a brand audit is a worthwhile exercise. It can help you to take stock of the strength of your brand and pinpoint which issues you want your rebrand to address. It can help you come up with a clear set of goals and indicators of success for the rebrand.
A total rebrand isn’t the only way to sharpen up your brand identity and stay up to date. If you’ve weighed up whether you need to rebrand and decided it’s not an urgent necessity, a brand refresh could be right for you.
It may be new names or revamped logos that grab attention when companies rebrand, but they’re just the tip of the iceberg. There’s a lot more work to be done in changing all of the smaller, less-obvious aspects of your branding. This is worth considering when you plan your rebrand, as it will impact how much time the process will take and what the cost implications might be.
Your rebranding checklist will probably include digital assets:
And, offline branding, including:
The brand personality itself, including:
In short, just about every touchpoint your business has with the rest of the world may need to be updated when you rebrand.
Once you’re clear on your goals for rebranding and you’ve decided on the scope of the project, it’s time to get started on making it happen.
A creative agency can be your biggest rebranding ally, as they’ll be able to help you plan the strategy as well as carry out the creative execution and the promotion of your new brand. Here are some tips for finding a great rebranding agency to partner with.
Your brief should include some background to the project, including your business story to date, the reason you want to rebrand and what your expectations are for the process. You should also give the agencies a clear scope of the deliverables for the project, as this will help them match their in-house capabilities to your requirements.
No two businesses are the same in their approach, but there are some core building blocks to a rebrand that are nearly always present. Your rebrand is likely to follow along these lines:
This period helps your agency or brand team get totally immersed in your current brand, while carrying out valuable research to give you a deeper understanding of your business context.
Once you’ve got a handle on where your brand currently is and where you want to be, you’re ready to develop a messaging approach. This is how you’ll position your brand, and it will be the starting point for things like your brand tagline, tone of voice and brand values. Your core messaging can include:
This is the part most people think of first when they hear the word ‘rebrand’. It’s the color palette, logo, fonts, artwork and illustration and any brand marques that will be updated or introduced.
Your rebranding agency or team should now be ready to come up with some suggested approaches for messaging and visuals, as well as new candidate brand names and taglines if applicable.
The final contribution the business stakeholders need to make is to feedback on these. Here are some tips for giving your rebrand designers useful and successful feedback:
Once the feedback has been resolved, you’ll start receiving the final deliverables. These might include a new logo, brand guidelines, color palette or design assets. Congratulations – you’re ready to roll out your brand new brand!
Looking for more branding inspiration? See how to choose a name for your new business