When you’re first starting a business, branding is likely the last thing on your mind. After all, it’s hard to sit down and flip through fonts when you’re still trying to figure out who your customers are (and where to find them). Plus, even if you made creating a brand identity a priority in the beginning, a change in business plans might have made your initial branding strategy obsolete. Whether your branding design efforts started (and ended) with a logo jotted down on a napkin, or you whiteboarded your way through the complete branding process — from brand values to logo variations — somewhere along the way things stopped working. However you got here, you’re not happy. Fortunately, rebranding is not uncommon — many major brands, ranging from Dunkin’ Donuts to Uber, have successfully rebranded in the past. If you’re considering a rebrand, keep reading to learn how to rebrand a company, plus examples of other brands who’ve successfully rebranded their website, name, logo, or entire company mission and purpose. But first, let’s make sure you have the right reasons to rebrand. The Right (and Wrong) Reasons to Rebrand Rebrands are complicated, and carry big risks. Even big brands aren’t immune — just look at Uber. After redesigning its logo, 44% of people were unsure of what Uber’s logo represented.  Ultimately, knowing the risks of rebranding can help you determine whether or not you’re going into a rebrand for the right reasons. If you’re looking at rebranding your business because sales have been slow or brand awareness efforts don’t seem to be paying off, you might want to reconsider — these issues can potentially be solved by creating a new marketing strategy, or conducting market research to identify the underlying cause.
But if you’re considering a rebrand because your company’s vision, mission, values, and market are no longer reflected in your brand, then a rebrand might be the right decision.
There are a few other major reasons you might consider a rebrand, including: New locations — you might need to refresh your brand if you’re expanding to international markets who won’t identify with your current logo, messaging, etc. Market repositioning — brands are designed to connect companies with their customers, so if you reposition your business to target a completely new customer profile — whether through product, place, price, or promotion — your brand will need to follow suit. New philosophy — your business’s mission, vision, and values should govern every decision you make — including brand decisions. If your MVV are shifting and pivoting the direction of your business along with them, you’ll need to reevaluate your brand. Mergers and acquisitions — when two companies come together, two brands come together, as well. If your company was acquired or joined with another company, you can’t just let both brands battle it out. Finding a new brand that reflects the new entity will prevent confusion and build trust. Additionally, here are a few reasons not to rebrand:  Boredom — too often, people consider a rebrand because they’re sick of seeing the same logo and slogan every day. When you’re starting to feel restless with your brand, remember that your customers (who see it much less frequently) might love that signature color you’ve come to loathe. Covering Up a Crisis — whether you’re working against persistent internal issues or fending off bad press, a rebrand isn’t the answer. Most consumers and employees are smart enough to see right through your rebrand and recognize it for what it is — a cover-up. Impact and ego — for new managers, a rebrand might seem like the fastest way to make your mark. But most new managers aren’t implementing the kind of institutional change that justifies a rebrand. More often than not, new leadership that insists on a rebrand is doing it more for themselves than the company. Looking for attention — maybe sales have been floundering, or perhaps brand awareness efforts aren’t picking up, but either way, jumping into a rebrand is the wrong move. At best, you’ll generate some short-term buzz, without the sales and marketing strategy to sustain it. At worst, you’ll lose whatever brand recognition you had and set back your sales and marketing efforts. If you’ve determined a rebrand is still the right choice for you, keep reading to learn how to devise a rebrand strategy. Not all rebrands are created equal, so let’s first consider whether a partial or total rebrand is the best option for your business. Partial vs. Total Rebrand The more established your business and brand are, the more you have to lose from a rebrand. If your business is more mature, a partial rebrand can help you retain the brand loyalty you’ve built, while refreshing your image to keep up with changing times. Think of a partial rebrand as an adjustment focused on your visual brand identity to suit new offerings or markets — as opposed to a complete identity crisis. That’s not to say that a partial rebrand can’t be effective. Just look at Old Spice. The men’s deodorant company redefined its place in the market and has seen massive growth every year since repositioning the brand — all while retaining what made Old Spice cool in the first place. However, if you’re undergoing a complete identity shift and your company’s mission, vision, and values are changing, a total rebrand might be in order. This option is typically suited to situations like mergers, product overhauls, and other similarly foundational shifts. Here, everything is on the table — from your name to your purpose, your market, or your brand identity. If a partial rebrand is a quick touch-up, the total rebrand is a complete makeover. Once you’ve determined whether you need a partial or total rebrand, take a look at the following five steps you’ll want to implement to successfully rebrand. 1. Reestablish your brand’s audience and market. After extensive market research, including focus groups and analyzing the data, you’ve noticed something startling — your customers (or competitors) aren’t who you thought they were. Maybe it’s a demographic with which you never thought you’d engage. Alternatively, maybe there’s a new competitor on the market and its products or services are directly competing with yours. And you have the data to prove it. Take a look at who’s actually buying from you — and who they’re buying from, instead of you. Comparing this against your initial target market and audience might reveal some stark differences. Once you’ve established your actual market and audience, you’re ready to start rebranding your company to connect with your customers (and outsmart your competitors). 2. Redefine your company’s vision, mission, and values. What are you doing? How are you doing it? Why are you doing it? When you’re re-evaluating your vision, mission, and values during a rebrand, these are the three questions you’ll need to ask yourself. While it’s easy to take your messaging foundations for granted, they can change as a company grows. New products, priorities, services, or stakeholders can completely undo what once seemed like a given. Here are a few major components of your company you’ll want to analyze to decide which part(s) of your company need a little TLC. Vision This is a big one. Vision acts as the North Star for every action your company undertakes, so it’s critical you have a firm understanding of your vision before moving forward — additionally, perhaps overtime your vision has changed. That’s okay, but it’s vital you redefine your vision as quickly as possible to ensure all your employees are making decisions with that vision in-mind. When you’re rebranding, company vision will affect everything from your website redesign to your hiring process. Mission If vision is your what, mission is your how. Maybe you’re still going in the same direction, but the way you’re getting there has changed. Ultimately, your mission is your company’s roadmap. When your mission changes, your messaging needs to change as well — making it just as crucial as vision during a rebrand. For instance, Sweetgreen’s mission statement is

Social Media

My Social Contacts