Rebranding: What to consider and how to succeed

What is rebranding?

Many businesses consider rebranding to regain momentum for their brands. While it’s exciting and can be a great decision, there are many important elements of rebranding to consider before beginning the process.

The brand of a company is how people perceive and experience it. You may be familiar with the Nike slogan “just do it.” It’s a simple phrase, yet they use that to empower their consumers. They want people to feel like they can accomplish anything with their products. The classic Nike check is their brand identity, also known as the visual part of the brand.

A brand and brand identity make up the brand strategy. But first, what is a brand strategy? The brand strategy is a roadmap to a company’s vision for its future. How do they want consumers to see them? How will they succeed in the market against their competitors? A successful business has a strong brand strategy.

Before you begin rebranding, consider these things. Ask yourself why you are wanting to rebrand. What has changed in the market, consumers, or company to warrant rebranding? Is it the best decision for your company?

If this sounds like something your company needs, then it’s time to begin the rebranding process!

Reimagining your brand strategy

The first step of rebranding is looking back at your original brand strategy. While your company won’t be getting a complete overhaul by rebranding, the original strategy will change in some capacity to accommodate rebranding. Identify the parts of the strategy that will no longer work for your brand.

Once you identify the parts of the brand strategy you wish to reimagine, ask yourself why these did not work. What has changed in either your company or the market? How can you better approach these challenges? Recognizing the weak points in the original brand strategy will keep those same weaknesses from occurring with rebranding.

With these findings, begin outlining the new strategy for your company. The new brand strategy will not build itself automatically, but it will begin to form as you step further into the process.

Types of rebranding research

An important part of the rebrand is market research. There are two types: qualitative and quantitative. These terms may remind you of high school science, but they are just as important to consider when it comes to rebranding. The results of this research will give you better insight into how you should approach both a rebrand and your overall existing brand strategy. 

First, let’s begin with qualitative research. One of the best ways to conduct qualitative research is through interviews and focus groups. You will want to ask customers, stakeholders, community members and/or employees about your (or your client’s) brand.

Ask these groups about their opinions on the company brand. What do they like and dislike about the company? What can the company do better? How do they understand their messaging?

These different types of opinions are the key to success. Knowing what your consumers or community want grants you an advantage in the market. Plus, listening to their suggestions shows that you care about their opinions. 

Next up is quantitative research. This type of data-driven research involves examining the market, trends, and analytics that surround your company. Some examples of quantitative research methods that could help with your rebrand are surveys, search engine optimization (SEO) or social media evaluation.

Programs like Semrush are great tools to see what SEO keywords garner the most digital traffic in your market. If there are new keywords that your brand didn’t previously rank for on search engines, factoring them into your website during a rebrand is a great way to gain more online traction. You can also evaluate what keywords your competitors rank for and work those into your online content.

Keep competitors top of mind

Don’t forget to research current social media trends and utilize them on your company’s pages. This will show consumers that part of your company’s brand personality includes staying on top of current trends.

Lastly, be sure to take the time to look at your competitors in the market. What does their brand voice sound like? What types of visuals or graphic elements do they use? The performance of your competitors is a great way to gauge what is successful and what isn’t in your market. Take this into account when rebranding and consider what will give your company the edge.

Think logistically

As mentioned, rebranding is not a simple or quick process. You’ll need to take all of your brand assets into account.

Rebranding can be costly, especially if the brand identity is being changed. That means a new logo, website, signage, advertising, uniforms – even the pens you have sitting at your front desk. Don’t forget to budget these costs into your rebranding plan so you don’t find yourself with unexpected costs.

The point of rebranding is to change things up, but consistency is still key. Stay consistent in the changes you make and don’t stray too far from your original brand. Companies that maintain consistency in their identity appear authentic and competent, making consumers trust the brand.

Rebranding is an exciting process that gives many companies the refresh that they need to stay relevant in their markets. It’s not always an easy process to build your brand, but don’t let that scare you. By building a strong brand strategy and considering all these elements, success can be found by rebranding.