Rebranding business takes thought and preparation

By Andi Gray

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It’s time to rebrand – at least I think it is. We’ve been through a lot of changes the last few years in terms of customers, markets, services and employees. Time to do a reality check on what we stand for. Any suggestions on do’s and don’ts?

Thoughts of the Day: Make it clear what your company stands for in order to pull in the right customers, employees and market opportunities. Make the look of the brand reflect the tone of your company. Appeal to emotion – which means taking into account colors that reflect the tone. Include all brand components.

Ask yourself a few questions before starting your rebranding project. Why are we rebranding? What problem are we attempting to solve with a rebranding? Does the brand tell a wrong or outdated story? What message are we trying to convey and to whom?

Let your customers know what your company stands for. This is especially important when trying to pull in the right customers, employees, and market opportunities. What do you think of when you think about your company? More importantly, what do your customers and your employees think? And do they agree?

Is there a single image that comes to mind? A picture can be worth a thousand words if it correctly conveys the essence of what your company stands for. Build a representative look for your company.

It can be a chicken-vs.-egg conversation when deciding what the brand stands for. Sometimes the company is well established, happy with its customers and employees. If that’s the case, start by asking them what they think and build a brand that represents their thoughts.

At other times, it’s necessary to re-think the markets the company does business in, the customers and perhaps even employees that the company attracts. Strike out in a new direction with a new look that represents the future.

Ask these questions to get started:

  • What level quality: low, medium or high? How about price?
  • Any warranty on goods & services? Any refunds?
  • Do most customers need, like or love the product?
  • Are customers and employees loyal, or do they come and go?
  • Does the brand represent a total umbrella for all that the company offers?
  • Is your company dealing with businesses or consumers? Slow-moving or fast? Intellectual or more simple? Fun-loving or serious?

You’ll have to decide how to incorporate the company’s name into its brand. Is the name the brand, such as Coca-Cola? Or is the intention to have an image take over, like the Nike Swoosh?

Emotion is an important part of branding, appeal to it. Make sure the emotion of your brand properly represents your company. Use words, images and colors to get your point across. Serious company? Pick a serious image and words. A more fun-oriented company needs a more light-hearted look and feel.

Color selection is especially important: red for energy, strength, passion, love. Yellow for happiness, joy, intellect. Orange for enthusiasm, creativity and stimulation. Green for nature, growth, harmony, healing. Blue is for depth, stability, trust, calming. Be careful because hues of colors also add meaning; for example dark purple is for gloom, sadness and frustration, while light purple represents romance and nostalgia. Some colors are more beloved, and some are highly disliked by most people. Do your homework!

Look to the internet for great examples of rebranding. Companies like PepsiCo, Old Spice and Apple, have rebranded and boosted their sales and recognition in the process.

Make sure to update all of your marketing to consistently represent your brand. Start with logo, tagline and voice. Be consistent with layout by using templates. For example: the logo always the same size, in the same location.

Looking for a good book? “Designing Brand Identity: An Essential Guide for the Whole Branding Team, 4th Edition”, by Alina Wheeler.

Andi Gray is President of Strategy Leaders Inc., StrategyLeaders.com, a business consulting firm that teaches companies how to double revenue and triple profits in repetitive growth cycles. Have a question for AskAndi? Wondering how Strategy Leaders can help your business thrive? Call or email for a free consultation & diagnostics:  (877)238-3535, AskAndi@StrategyLeaders.com. Check out our library of business advice articles: AskAndi.com.

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About the author

Andi Gray
Andi Gray is president of Strategy Leaders Inc., strategyleaders.com, a business consulting firm that specializes in helping small to midsize, privately held businesses achieve doubled revenues and tripled profits in repetitive growth cycles. Interested in learning how Strategy Leaders can help your business? Call now for a free consultation and diagnostic process: (877) 238-3535. Do you have a question for Andi? Email her: AskAndi@StrategyLeaders.com. Visit AskAndi.com for an entire library of her articles.

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