5 Steps to a Successful Rebrand

It can sometimes be difficult to know when to start rebranding, or if your company really needs to rebrand.

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September 22, 2021

Over the years, companies evolve and rebrand themselves, updating their branding to be more modern, efficient, and relevant. A brand shows people who your company is, what it stands for, what it does, and how it does it, which is why it is vital to update branding every so often. One example of a company rebranding after years of declining sales is Subway’s menu rebranding effort, which they’ve labeled as “Eat Fresh Refresh.” This includes more than 20 updates to their menu and marketing efforts to promote healthier changes. Another example of a major rebranding effort in 2021 was pharmaceutical company Pfizer’s new logo. The new logo, typeface, and colors signal a more scientific identity, especially since the logo was inspired by DNA’s double helix structure. It can sometimes be difficult to know when to start rebranding, or if your company really needs to rebrand. If you are struggling with this, then keep reading to view the steps you should take to implement a successful rebrand.

Understand why you are rebranding

5 Steps to a Successful Rebrand Understand why you are rebranding | 97 Switch

First, you should understand the reasons why you should rebrand. The reasons could include that your company is trying to attract new audiences, you want to set your business apart from competitors, you need your company to stay current, your company has expanded, or your business has a poor reputation. After you’ve decided why you are rebranding, then you can proceed with the rest of the branding process.

Research brand audience and competition

5 Steps to a Successful Rebrand Research brand audience & competition | 97 Switch

After you understand the reasons behind why you want to rebrand, then you can begin to gather information, such as info about your brand’s audience. You’ll want to know your brand’s customer demographics like age, location, sex, interests, and anything else that may be relevant. On the other hand, you’ll also want to research your brand’s competition. Knowing your competitors and about their marketing strategies and branding efforts can be key to developing a unique brand.

Conduct a brand audit

5 Steps to a Successful Rebrand Conduct a brand audit | 97 Switch

Another way to gather important information is by conducting a brand audit. A brand audit examines the current state of your brand to identify how you’d like to change going forward. It can include questions such as what your business currently does, how your brand is currently perceived, and information about current brand strengths and weaknesses.

Reinvent your company’s brand system

5 Steps to a Successful Rebrand Reinvent your company’s brand system | 97 Switch

A company’s brand system, or blueprint, includes its brand heart and brand messaging. Here’s a little bit about brand heart and brand messaging and all that they entail.

Brand heart

Your company’s brand heart determines how your brand is presenting itself to its audience, as well as everything your brand does. A brand heart includes a purpose, vision, mission, and values. Here’s a definition for each of these.

  • Purpose: Your brand purpose states why you exist. Having a brand purpose gives you some key advantages over competitors by building a more emotional relationship between a brand. Here’s an example of Crayola’s brand purpose: “Encouraging children to be creative, and enabling parents to inspire them.”
  • Vision: The vision shares about the future you want to create. One example of an excellent vision statement is Disney’s: “To entertain, inform and inspire people around the globe through the power of unparalleled storytelling, reflecting the iconic brands, creative minds, and innovative technologies that make ours the world’s premier entertainment company.”
  • Mission: The mission establishes what you are hoping to achieve. For example, IKEA’s mission statement is “To create a better everyday life for the many people.”
  • Values: A company’s values guide their behavior—they are the why behind a brand. Values can tell a lot about a company. For example, Adidas’ values are performance, passion, integrity, and diversity. Another brand’s example is Coca-Cola; Coca-Cola’s brand values are leadership, collaboration, integrity, accountability, passion, diversity, and quality.

Brand messaging

It’s a lot easier said than done to correctly portray your brand. This is where brand messaging comes in, capturing the core elements of your brand to appeal to your customers. Successful brand messaging can even help build a loyal customer base. Let’s take a look at the three main parts of brand messaging.

  • Tagline: Taglines, otherwise known as slogans, have the ability to stick in people’s minds and capture their attention. Taglines should be simple, short, and memorable. For example, Subways’ tagline is “Subway, eat fresh.”
  • Value Proposition: Value propositions are short statements that describe what your company does for people. There can be more than one value proposition for a brand. Take a look at this example from Evernote of a value proposition: “Take notes anywhere. Find information faster. Share ideas with anyone. Meeting notes, web pages, projects, to-do lists—with Evernote as your note taking app, nothing falls through the cracks.”
  • Brand pillars: Brand pillars are the core points that make your company unique. They can be values and characteristics that help share your brand with the world. Nike’s brand pillars are specifically about competing and challenging oneself. The company’s marketing efforts all tie back to these brand pillars.

A company’s brand heart and messaging all contribute to how a business is perceived. Updating each of these things can help your rebranding endeavors go more smoothly, especially since the changes you make will all be founded in the brand system.

Rebuild your brand identity

5 Steps to a Successful Rebrand Rebuild your brand identity | 97 Switch

After reinventing your brand system, your company will be ready to create new content that reflects the changes. This includes a new logo, colors, and typography. Logos should be simple, easy to understand, and make an impact. Your brand heart and messaging should be reflected in the logo, as well as the colors and typography you choose. Hire a graphic designer—or an agency with one—to redesign a logo if needed. At the end of the day, you’ll also want to make sure you set brand guidelines so that every piece of content your company creates accurately reflects your brand.

Key takeaways

5 Steps to a Successful Rebrand Key takeaways | 97 Switch

Every so often, businesses should rebrand. There are many reasons a company should consider rebranding, including needing to attract new audiences and differentiating itself from competitors. It is also a great way to stay current and show that your company has evolved over time. Lastly, it is sometimes a necessity, especially if your business has gained a poor reputation over time. Whatever the reason, rebranding can help a company become more unique and memorable to consumers.

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