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The Benefits of RebrandingBack
Wednesday 28 March 2012 at 3:26 PM
Posted by: AdministratorViews: 18416
Time and time again we hear the same thing from SME's to large corporates from around the country. Things like:
'Our brand is our logo'
'We had our brand designed when we started and people love it'
'We haven’t looked at our brand in years, it's not a focus for us'
'We don’t need to spend money on our brand, we are extremely busy and well known already'
There are plenty more examples, I won’t go into them now but you've probably heard them yourself. What is consistent is the misconception of brand being equal to a logo. That's a brand right? Wrong!
Don't get me wrong, there are many businesses that do understand what I'm talking about already and so this article won’t be anything new to them. To others I hope it gets you thinking.
Your brand is far more than a logo. It's everything you represent across each and every touch point across all your stakeholders - from your business card through to your website, from your signage through to your rich media.
But the topic here is 'the benefits of rebranding'. Let’s just say you currently have everything in order. You have done the right thing by your business/company and developed a brand complete with brand guidelines. You've acknowledged that correct branding is not just for the big brands, its equally for SME's. Now, let's say that you did this sometime ago and haven’t changed it since - is it still ok?
The answer could be yes, could also be no - but which is it? I'll give you an example of one of our clients (which would like to remain anonymous), approx 5 years ago we developed for a completely new business. We developed everything from the company name, logo and full brand guidelines document. Over the past 5 years this business has grown significantly, not just in size, but also in service offering. By all accounts this business represented something completely different 5 years later and was seeking a new audience altogether. The fundamentals had changed markedly and a basic brand audit revealed that a rebranding exercise was in order.
Did the client want to go through this again? No.
Did they need to go through it again? Absolutely.
You are probably thinking why? Simple, your brand is your personality, its how you wish your offering to be presented to both internal and external stakeholders - namely your customers. It's your method of engaging with them, and its how your customers come to recognise you. If your business evolves (and naturally its assumed it does) then naturally so too must your image - no matter the size of your business.
Let's say your business doesn’t necessary change too much over time, a brand can still become tired, look old and feel completely dated. With the alarming rate of change of the past decade, consumers expect far more from a brand. They have higher expectations and their ability to shop and search is now easier than ever. You know the stats, there are many but it's a given that 80% of people first turn to the web to search for products and services - this includes your products and services as well as those of your competitors. So how do you differentiate yourself when you are being completely evaluated by how you are representing yourself - its your brand, and the extensions of your brand that ensures a professional credible representation both online and offline.
Your brand is one of your most valuable assets. As with most things, it ages, it has a lifespan. In some cases a brand can remain unchanged for years, only if the proper focus as been applied it's likely the people behind these brands have worked hard to ensure their brand is still relevant and engaging. They've done the due diligence and established things can remain as is. Conversely, many brands change and evolve, adapting to the market and maintaining clear stakeholder engagement whilst separating themselves from the competition.
At the end of the day there are no hard and fast rules. We all know that although we try be objective, when it comes to branding its largely subjective. Having said this, as long as the aim and focus is to maintain that vital connection with the target audience then you'll go a long way to developing an engaging brand.
If you are currently in a quandary of what to do (or not do) with your brand give us a call and we'd be delighted to discuss your situation and provide advice on your options.