Guest Post by Erin Krieger, Creative Director at DMI
Your brand is the face, voice, and culture of your organization, and it’s how you emotionally connect with your customers. It’s more than a logo and a tagline—it’s the full definition of why you exist, what products and services you offer, and how you bring those products and services to life. Without a clear and consistent expression of your brand, you may find that you’re not connecting with your customers fully.
Is It Time For a Rebrand?
It may be time for a rebrand if you can identify with one or more of the following:
1. Your mission/vision/positioning/reason for being has shifted
In 2014, Siemens made a drastic shift from a focus on stakeholder value to its redefined mission of ingenuity for life through technology. This fundamental change had a large impact on the company culture and required a top-down communication approach that made employees feel they have a stake in the company.
2. Your actual business or offering has shifted
In 2014, CVS Caremark took cigarettes out of its stores. This change was the perfect opportunity to rebrand with a focus on health and wellness. The company reintroduced itself as CVS Health.
3. Your audience has expanded or shifted
As Gen Z begins to enter the workforce, we can expect a change in how brands connect. Thanks to their easy access to information, both Millennials and Gen Zers are fickle and tend to support ethical brands that strive to do the right thing. These shifting consumer habits make it critical for brands to assess where they sit within the market.
4. New competitors have disrupted the market
In 2012, Oscar Health entered the saturated and often complicated insurance space. The company’s mission is to make healthcare accessible and affordable for all through a full-stack tech platform. Although only available regionally in the US, Oscar has forced competitors to examine their brand positions within the market.
5. You are starting to look and sound like everyone else
NCTA – The Internet & Television Association
In 2018, the National Cable and Television Association looked to shift people’s perception of the cable industry. The organization wanted to differentiate itself from all the “stuffy” agencies on Capitol Hill and resonate with policymakers, member companies, and all Americans.
6. Your public perception is damaged due to a crisis
In 2018, Uber decided to undergo its second rebrand in three years because of negative attention at the corporate level. The brand pivoted from an all-caps, member-only club look to a look that was friendlier and more accessible.
7. Your most recent rebrand was not well received
In 2010, GAP redesigned its logo for the first time in 24 years. The backlash was so brutal that the logo lasted only six days.
How You Can Be Successful
Seek External Guidance
When you live and breathe your brand, it can be hard to see the forest through the trees. For a rebrand, it’s important that you work with an outside consultancy. With fresh eyes, an outsider can identify things you may have become blind to—competitive differentiation, inconsistency within the brand expression, or industry-leading opportunities. All the learned insights will help define and shape the future of your brand. You may discover that your key messaging and proof points need to be slightly adjusted. Or you may find that a complete overhaul is needed to regain consumer trust. Whatever the end result, an outside consultant can provide you with the needed perspective.
Build Internal Champions
When going through any degree of a rebrand, it’s critical that the team members throughout your organization are fully aware and onboard. Rolling out your brand internally is beneficial in two respects:
- You build brand champions within your team
- You give your team the tools to communicate the update to their clients
If your team members are invested in your brand, they will be more likely to praise the organization when speaking to potential clients and more eager to provide references for recruitment purposes.
Wherever you are in your organization’s journey, it is always important to reassess where your brand stands. In a world that is constantly evolving and changing, no brand can afford to stand still.