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How to Know When It’s Time for a Rebrand

Courtney Beasley

For many marketers, the idea of a rebrand is daunting. Your brand is the face and voice of your business, and the thought of reshaping its identity can be an intimidating one. On the other hand, a rebrand can serve as a much needed new beginning.

Whether to reflect your company’s recent growth or to better connect with a changing target audience, rebranding can be the remedy that keeps your company relevant in the marketplace. But it can be difficult to pinpoint when your business should take the leap to recreate your brand.

Before we help you determine if your business needs a rebrand, let’s examine what business rebrands really are — and what it takes to execute them.

What is a business rebrand?

When a business undergoes a rebrand, it changes or refreshes its brand identity to transform public perception. A rebrand can reinvent the visual design (logo, color palette, typography, imagery, icons, etc.), as well as the messaging (company name, value proposition, slogan, voice, tone, etc.) of the brand across every channel.

Rebrands are often initiated as a response to a change in business goals or market realities. A great example is Dunkin’ Donuts, who was the #1 retailer of donuts in America but had started to place a greater emphasis on coffee beverages and a more diversified food menu. With a mission to become the premier beverage-led, on-the-go brand, the company underwent a full rebranding when it changed its name — and accompanying design and messaging — to just Dunkin’ in 2019.

Compare that case to Verizon, which revamped its logo in 2015 to modernize the brand’s visual identity. By simply tweaking the size of the brand’s identifiable red check mark to keep up with minimalistic design trends, Verizon essentially maintained its original identity while staying competitive in the marketplace.

A rebrand as subtle as Verizon’s can also be referred to as a “brand refresh,” which updates the visual elements of a brand to give it a new look while still maintaining a connection to the original identity. However, no matter the extent of the rebrand, any and all elements you alter should be examined within the context of your business goals.

If successful, a rebrand of any form can reinvigorate your business, improve brand recognition, and catapult you above the competition, ultimately enhancing brand equity and loyalty.

Does your business need a rebrand?

So how do you know when it’s time for a rebrand? Here are a series of questions to consider.

Has your business evolved?

When it comes to the survival of the fittest, sometimes your business has to evolve to stay ahead. Yet no matter how much change you go through, your brand should still reflect the business you are today. For instance, if the name of your brand is product-specific and your product offerings have changed, you might want to consider a new name so your audience understands what you offer. Or, maybe you’re going after a new target audience all together. In that case, the design and messaging of your brand should work to help you appeal to them. Whether it’s your audience, product offerings or mission, if your business model has significantly changed, your brand will need to change along with it.

Is your brand lacking a strong point of view?

Your brand should have a cohesive identity that clearly encompasses your company mission, vision and values. This identity should be easily identifiable and consistent throughout your messaging and design across channels (e.g., website, sales materials, email signature and more). If your employees aren’t able to easily articulate what your business does and the value you offer, the public won’t be able to either, and a rebrand may be needed to help you refocus your point of view.

Are you facing tough competition?

As new companies enter an industry sector, sometimes they adopt a hivelike mentality and mimic the model or look of existing businesses. This can make it hard for your brand to stand out from the crowd. If you’re finding it difficult to differentiate your business from your competitors, or feel like you’re falling out of step with current design trends, a rebranding could help you reclaim your position in the market.

 

When executed under the right circumstances, a rebrand can breathe new life into your business and ultimately help you become a leader in your industry. At Walker Sands, we understand how to create recognizable, authoritative identities for our clients and ourselves. Get in touch with our team of branding experts to learn how we can do the same for you.