The process of rebranding is daunting. There is an intense amount of effort and time that can often be overlooked at the moment your company first mutters the word ‘rebrand.’ First, there is the creation of the new visual. Immediately, there are dozens of directions to go in, and that’s just the first step of the process. But before we progress any further, let’s establish this- a brand is not just a logo, it’s your identity!
If you’re still reading this, chances are your company falls into one of three categories:
- The first is a company without a strong brand or logo. This is common with small, sole proprietor businesses. You’re starting up with all the new expenses of your business and are cutting corners at every opportunity to save some dough. Please! Don’t! Do yourself a favor and slow down. Don’t overlook the importance of a strong brand. You may end up regretting it in a couple of years (I’ll explain why a little later). There are also the businesses – and I’m sure you’ve seen them – that change their branding so often, you’re not even sure they had one to begin with. That isn’t doing your business any favors. The point of a brand is to differentiate your company from the competition, be recognizable, and be the face of your company. Your brand will help you stand out from the crowd and be familiar among your audience.
- The second category are the businesses that have a developed and strong brand. As one of these businesses, you have probably shelled out a good about of money in research, testing, and development. The process took time. It probably took many variations, edits, and redesigns. But still, just because the end result was strong, cost you money, and took time, doesn’t mean it is still relevant to your audience after significant time has passed. Think about how much your business has changed in 5, 10, or 20 years. Does your branding still reflect the business’ core values and messaging? It’s never the wrong time to assess how your business compares to the competition and how your brand is perceived by your clients.
- As for that third category? Congrats! You are good to go. You have a strong brand that is current, fresh looking, matches your business goals and vision, represents your business, and is appealing to your audience. I caution you on this though: don’t forget to reevaluate your situation annually. It doesn’t take much to shift into a different zone and be just a few transactions away from coming across as obsolete.
Regardless of which category you fall into, it’s wise to know what trends are considered current so that when you hear the words “modern” or “sleek,” you can easily picture what that visually translates to for your brand. Things to be mindful of with a new logo are fonts, colors, and the ability for it to look fresh and fit perfectly on any medium. Will it look good on a jacket? A business card? Letterhead? Each social media channel? Be mindful when you’re rebranding that fonts come with readability – some look great huge and impossible when shrunken down. Does your logo have an icon? Think about McDonalds or Target. They are iconic in nature and can stand alone without the brand name and still do their job. Colors? They carry emotions – plus, they’ll be the main focus of your brand, so make sure you’re ready to own them.
So, you’ve evaluated your brand, made the move to the new and now, remember all of the things that came with your original branding? You may not think about it right away, but your brand is already out there. Anywhere your brand may be now, will need to be updated with your new updated branding: collateral, packaging, website, letterhead, business cards, signage, clothing, social media, advertising. Those are just the very immediate places your brand is that will need to be replaced. Some of these replacements also come with a price tag so if you rush your logo and end up making heavy investments, if you decide in three years that you are still not happy with your brand and choose to rebrand AGAIN, guess what? You are out a lot of money with now double the work. So don’t be hasty.
One of the best places to begin when starting your rebranding process, is with a competitive analysis. What do your competitors look like? What are their key messages? What’s their culture like? How are you different from them? The answers to these questions are crucial in establishing your brand positioning and/or in rebranding. Consulting with a full-service marketing agency that has experience in not only the graphic design elements of your potential rebranding, but with how your brand will be represented in the market is a great way to start your process, and save you time and money. This is where RISE Marketing comes in! Contact us today to start bringing your brand to the next level!