Businesses usually consider brand logos as the manifestation of their branding – or rebranding. However, this is a common mistake: a brand image isn’t limited to this graphical, emblematic totem. What about a slogan, brand name, advertising, including even a round blade sign that directs customers to the store or office? Is Rebranding Is Much More Than Designing a New Logo?
There is no doubt that a logo is a typical distinctive mark of a business. It’s usually one of the crucial elements to promote in order to increase brand awareness. However, when thinking about rebranding, you should consider it a major revolution of your identity. Such a mindset implies a far more significant scope of changes.
What Is Rebranding?
Rebranding is a market strategy of changing the corporate image of a company. In other words, it is a process when an already-established brand changes corporate design, name, symbol, as well as a business strategy. As you can see, rebranding logo design is merely a small part. If a business decides to limit the process to the graphical emblem only, it will hardly achieve the main purpose of rebranding – establishing a new brand identity.
Fresh identity can be motivated by several factors. Mostly, they include changes in consumer behavior or the marketplace. To have a better understanding, let’s look at world-famous cases.
So, what is rebranding examples’ rationale? A case that has been occurring in the hospitality industry in recent years represents the combination of both reasons: change in the marketplace, together with consumer behavior shift. We are talking about an initiative of a world-famous hospitality company Marriott – Homes and Villas by Marriott International.
Although the organization is among the leaders in the industry, it’s been losing the battle over younger generations, when Airbnb – vacation rental online marketplace – entered the battlefield. A relatively young tech-company made the giants of the industry consider rebranding in one way or another. According to the data published by Business Insider, it significantly outperformed Marriott, HomeAway, Hilton, Jin Jiang, Wyndham, and IHG in terms of the number of listed rooms in 2019.
The online marketplace offers a wide variety of vacation rental options that are cheaper than those provided by hotels. Moreover, tech-savvy millennials like the flexibility and accessibility of the service. All these factors perfectly match the needs of younger generations, which leads to Airbnb taking leading positions in the hospitality market.
In order to respond to the new reality in the industry, Marriott decided to provide a similar offer –home rental. As you can see, considering a variety of new logos examples would have been inefficient because it wouldn’t have met the outcome – meeting the customers’ needs.
This leads us to the main point that a company can only reap the benefits of rebranding if it identifies the desired outcome. To achieve it, you need to start with core aspects like a business strategy. Branded details like logo and slogan come after because they perform more like a final touch rather than the main activity.
Types of Rebranding: What Can You Opt for?
Rebranding is an initiative that can turn to bless your sales with a boost or undermine years of work. Your consumers may not like the new look or services and, consequently, abandon you. With this, you will only benefit the competitors.
A company, which is considering changing its brand, should assess the necessity and act only if it’s required. It’s vital to note that an established-brand should think twice if it aims to reimagine itself completely. There are several situations when a total makeover is prudent:
Changed Mission and Values
Your philosophy is the core aspect, and the whole branding strategy revolves around it. It’s normal that sometimes we change what we stand for. In this case, you need to align your logo, package, slogan, ways and types of advertising with new beliefs.
However, even in the face of such events, a company needs to have solid grounds for a complete rebrand. If there are no, it’s better to consider partial rebranding.
Mergers, acquisitions, and a brand-new product line are attributed to foundational shifts and imply total makeover. It can be compared to establishing a new company with a new brand, which isn’t limited to considering alternative advertisement ideas. The best solution is to forget about the old look and strategy and start from scratch. In other words, you literally invent a new brand.
As an example, let’s look at what happened to Satyam Computer Service. The company was involved in a major scandal. The chairman confessed that the company’s accounts had been falsified. The organization was pushed to the brink of bankruptcy. It was purchased later by Tech Mahindra that rebranded the company and merged with it.
In all the other cases, a company should merely adjust its strategy and, sometimes, look to the new needs. Basically, a partial rebrand is about your visual identity since the core aspects remain untouched. It may take place when a company:
- Enters new markets
- Aims to expand its share by attracting new consumers
- Responds to the changes in the market in order to reconnect with the existing customers
Sometimes, specialists refer to it as a proactive rebranding, which aim is to seize new opportunities. A great example is Old Spice. It has been on the shelves since 1938 and used to be associated with a product for elderly gentlemen. The company’s share in the market was pretty impressive until Axe literally slaved the younger demographic. Axe launched a hype marketing campaign, which is truly one of the best successful advertising examples until now.
Old Spice couldn’t stay aside and needed to respond. The company decided to outperform the competitor and appeal to men of all ages. It featured what matters for everyone – young and old men – manliness. It was illustrated in the Manbook, where Old Spice spoke volumes about its principles, and in a new package, in-store display, and marketing. That’s how the well-known red deodorant appeared.
How to Rebrand?
With all these taken into account, it’s becoming clear that the first step is to determine a business goal. Once this is done, it’s time to start working out the plan. The plan of changing the corporate image is a rebranding strategy definition. It includes several steps. Depending on the goals, some steps can be eliminated.
It means that there is no fit-it-all rebranding strategy template. It’s a long and tedious way, where a company needs to involve employees from different levels, from top-management to frontline employees. When you set up a dedicated team of contributors, you should move step-by-step, from core things to minor. Let’s take a closer look.
Identify What You Stand For
The vision, mission, and values are interconnected notions that shape the overall branding strategy. They show what is the bigger purpose of your business activity and prove why you pursue it. These three notions are highly important to consumers: today, they want to see business as something more than a machine for making cash.
Look at Nike with the mission “To bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete in the world. If you have a body, you are an athlete.” Thus, a sportswear brand does its best to promote sports. This is reflected in everything, including the implemented advertising in marketing.
Understand What the Audience Needs
Tracking the audience is a non-stop activity, which every business should do. With this, you will always know which direction to take, as the ultimate goal of any business is to make a profit, which comes from consumers.
You should focus on what your target audience needs. You can carry out polls, deep research on customer behavior, as well as study the competitors. All this can give you valuable insights into the business strategy. Moreover, you may need to adjust some aspects – for instance, you’ve been focusing on digital ads while offline marketing is more effective in connecting with your customers.
Examine the Market Trends
Any business that wants to keep prospering needs to follow current marketing trends that always evolve. Just remember the mentioned Marriott case: even the giants can’t take the status quo position and stop evolving together with the market.
Here, again, a working solution is to monitor your competitors. This isn’t limited to the leaders only. Small companies show the potential to gain a significant market share. They are usually more innovative; therefore, you can adopt something new and diversify your product or service.
Once you establish the core aspects, you can move further and adopt a new branding strategy. These aspects are the North Star for further changes and improvements. Depending on the scope of your rebranding, you may need to reestablish:
- Visual look: a logo, color palette, typography, imagery, and shapes
The ultimate tip here is to remain consistent. If you want to achieve success, consumers should clearly understand who you are, what you do, and why. If one aspect doesn’t align with others, you risk undermining your professional reputation and confuse the audience.
To dig a bit deeper, let’s take a look at an example. Uber – a tech company that offers vehicles for hire and delivery services – changed its logo several times. Obviously, the company had made the wrong choice when revising the logo design ideas because 44% of Uber customers weren’t sure what a redesigned emblematic totem represented.
Keep in mind that visual rebranding isn’t limited to the logo only. In a digital world, a company needs to reinvent its website, social media accounts, and advertising. All must be cohesive. That’s why it’s not always reasonable to follow online or offline marketing trends. The best solution is to pave your wave according to the core principles.
Brand guidelines help to make the path easier. This is a set of main aspects to adhere to that guides you to an aligned presentation throughout all the touchpoints with consumers.
Tips to Consider
When working on rebranding, a company should take into consideration many details. It’s easy to lose focus and forget about some important aspects like:
A Compelling Narrative
Today, brands are more than sellers. At least from consumers’ point of view. They are living organisms that have principles, values, and mission. Clients want to hear brands’ stories. That’s why storytelling is gaining more and more popularity is marketing.
Every brand has a story to tell. It shouldn’t be compulsorily focused on the creation of the company or CEO biography. To have a better understanding, consider successful advertising examples. Apple, who positions itself as an innovator, launched a commercial featuring the geniuses from different spheres of life. The video is a short narrative that shows – “crazy” ones eventually make a difference.
Brands usually focus too much on the masses, completely forgetting about the very first customers – their employees. It’s a fatal mistake as the employees are the ones who transfer the ideas and values to clients.
It means that a team should also align with the rebranding. It should become the manifestation of the new corporate image. Otherwise, they won’t deliver exceptional customer myths and experiences.
A successful brand relaunch requires much time. After all, there are so many aspects to consider. Here, companies make two mistakes: they rebrand too quickly or too slowly. The former is worse than the latter. A quick relaunch increases the risk of failure due to inconsistent branding. A slow relaunch may come with high costs: the longer you work on rebranding, the more you need to pay to the specialists. Therefore, it’s better to set a timeframe.
Branding is only successful when it’s consistent. Companies should strictly monitor that all alterations align. Otherwise, a brand risks wasting money for nothing and confusing its target audience. Constant monitoring is vital as it’s easier to solve a problem in the early stage.
Rebranding strategies may seem hard to comprehend in the beginning. The whole process requires a strict plan with set objectives and timeframe. It’s always better to spend a bit more time on planning rather than waste a lot on optimizing the process on the go.