22nd October 2019

How do you know when it's time to rebrand?

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Lauren Swarbrick

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How do you know when it's time to rebrand?

For the majority of business owners and for many marketers, a rebrand is a once-in-a-career project. It’s exciting, it’s thought provoking and done correctly, it can truly reinvigorate a business. It’s also time-consuming and investment heavy, and it needs careful consideration, a lot of planning, good timing and the right agency partner to be successful.

So, how do you know when it’s time to make that call and appoint a branding agency? Here’s a handful of scenarios that signal it’s time to kick off a rebranding project...

The business has evolved

Like the world around us and the market conditions we operate in, businesses change over time. As a business evolves, it's business model changes, or it scales, the brand may no longer represent the business it has become or reflect it’s current brand strategy, positioning or proposition. Embarking on a rebranding exercise will help the business define a new brand that better reflects its new place in the world, and gives it the foundations needed for the next phase of its growth journey.

Following a merger or aquisition

In the case of a merger or aquisition, either one business is folded into another, or both are repackaged as an entirely new entity. Either way, new ownership or a new partnership marks the start of a new chapter, both internally and externally. It’s vital for busiesses going through this, to look at how the brands sit together under the new parent company. As well as addressing the structure of the overall brand architecture, a rebrand will help consolidate and re-focus the company’s vision, mission and goals, in order to accurately portray who the business is now as a unit.

A change in target audience

A brand should always speak to the people the business is trying to reach. People (especially modern consumers) seek to align themselves with brands whose values they share; if they don't feel personally connected to a brand, they won’t bond with it. If a company is looking to appeal to a new demographic, whose buying habits and beliefs differ from their previous target audience, the old brand well may no longer resonate. A rebrand gives a business the opportunity to redefine itself with the goal of attracting and engaging these new untapped audiences.

To differentiate from the competition

Branding is all about competitive differentiation and a businesses brand should portray and present its unique value proposition and showcase the things that make it different and better. If a brand is generic, unrecognisable and non-memorable it will merge into a sea of sameness. A rebrand can refresh a businesses identity, lend it an air of originality, make it stand out from the crowd and give it a competitive advantage.

The brand is dated and no longer relevant

It's critical not to base the branding of a business on current trends and brands should always strive to be timeless, but tastes do change and what felt fresh a decade ago may not be relevant today. If a brand is stale, dated and no longer resonates with a contemporary audince it will have a negative impact on the business. A rebrand can reinvigorate a brand and give a business a new lease of life, meaning and renewed sense of purpose in the modern world.

To disassociate from a poor reputation

Sometimes a business may need to break ties with its original brand to escape a bad reputation, disassociate from a negative image or proactively demonstrate a commitment to a new, improved culture. Rebranding is often the simplest and most effective remedy in these situations, helping stakeholders, consumers and the general market, see it in a fresh new light.

In an increasingly competitive and quickly changing world, a rebrand can infuse a businesses marketing efforts with relevance and vigor, and can quite literally make or break a business. But it shouldn't be undertaken lightly, without the total buy in of all stakeholders and without due attention, time and care; a reactionary, rushed, unconsidered rebrand rarely feels authentic, unique and original.

If you are ready to refresh your brand and visual identity or want to find out more about our branding services get in touch with our brand team to chat through your project.

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