When my clients ask when to start to brand their company, I always ask them if they have already made any sales. Many new entrepreneurs want to invest in perfect logo colours and a site even before they have an idea about what they will sell. They believe in success (which is amazing), but they don’t have any sales. In such a situation they quite probably will end up investing even more on rebranding.
Let me also add a small remark. When we talk about rebranding a personal brand, it’s a very different story, because you do not change what you are. An alteration of few details here and there, will not make you another person. You are what you are. In business branding, the situation is different as you can change anything you want. But first, let’s talk if you need to change it at all.
There are many reasons for rebranding.
- Brand doesn’t reflect your personality.
- The brand look is outdated.
- The company was sold. And so much more.
All reasons are good, but let’s look at the pros and cons. The great part is that you will have all fresh new brand. The bad part is that your customers will have to change the image in their mind, they will need to rearrange all ideas about how your brand looks, feels, and behaves. It’s an additional stress for the buyer and guess what, yes, they choose not to take a complex path. They throw the old image from their mind, and they may decide to trust you again, or they may decide to forget about you, it’s up to them. As the result, rebranding costs devaluation of the brand and reduction of customers.
To make these issues less harmful for the brand, marketers use brand positioning statement in a smart way. As you know, you have three core elements of the brand positioning statement. The market where the brand operates, the target audience and the point of difference. So marketers choose to change only one element at a time. That means that clients will have their habitual connection to your brand, and they need to adjust to just one element.
For instance, if you sell “innovative personal computers for creative people”, you may change only one aspect to — “luxury personal computers for creative people” or “innovative computing devices for creative people” or “innovative personal computers for office workers”. In all these options only one aspect has been changed, and the two others remain constant.
But what when you just want new colours and fonts. Some time ago I was writing about the main elements which the customer remembers about your brand. Those are colours, fonts and the treatment of the images. If you change it, all clients will stop recognising you. That means you need to double the effort to advertise your business with its new brand. You will not only spend money but a lot of time, almost as if you started all over again.
So before you jump into rebranding think about three things.
- Do you have enough of time and money to perform the transition from the old to a new brand?
- Do you have an important reason why you are doing it so that customers can accept the change flawlessly?
- How can you do it with minimal changes and maximum benefits?
If you have the answers and the strategy, go for it. The brand is an evolving entity, and we need to help it grow and change as much as we can.