This last month has seen the country embark on some momentous shake up’s, many of which will go down in the history books; the decision to leave the EU, the England football team’s embarrassing exit from the Euro’s, the resignation of David Cameron and the appointment of Theresa May in his place – the second women in British history to do so!
While we watch over the next 3/6/12 months how all of this will affect us (ok maybe not the football) there’s one thing that’s certain, the Britain Brand will never be the same again.
This got us thinking. When you’re embarking on a rebrand how you would as a company successfully and smoothly rebrand amongst the chaos?
A rebrand may be on the cards for a number of reasons such as the need to breathe new life into your company, a change of direction or offerings, merges or acquisitions to name a few. The value of a rebrand, if executed correctly, can be huge with benefits ranging from increased competitive advantage to protecting longevity to fuelling a re-growth. For further benefits click here.
If you have already chosen to rebrand the next few steps can be daunting, chaotic and confusing but here are our tips on how to ensure it goes as smoothly and successfully as possible.
Trust your agency
Rebranding should feel like breathing new life into your company and design by committee is a recipe for disaster – often resulting in underwhelming and ineffective rebranding that’s badly implemented. Hire good people who understand your message and brand ethos, provide good briefing not handholding, then let them work their magic.
Know what to hold on to – and what to bin
It can be tricky to break emotional ties with old brands. So give yourself the best chance you need to be purposeful in creating paths from the old brand to the new.
Find opportunities to keep elements that matter to your company and your clients. This could be an iconic typeface, icon or colour. We know it’s important to keep continuity during the transition to leverage existing brand equity. We’ve undertaken rebrands which have kept colours, shapes, styles etc. where the new logo pays subtly homage to the old identity but developed it to serve a new purpose.
Be prepared to engage
You may love your new branding but do remember that people tend to be wary of the unfamiliar. Once you have rebranded and launched it monitor social responses carefully and don’t forget to engage when necessary. Taste is subjective and you may not be able to change all minds straight away or even at all, but this is still a great opportunity to make a connection so keep content positive, open and enthusiastic.
You can go for an all at once approach or a more subtle introduction to the new brand but either way, make sure you talk it through with your agency and have an agreed re-branding plan in place. Some areas can be redesigned and implemented faster than others. Websites, brochures and signage can take a little longer and need more further planning.
Don’t surprise your customers
Let your customers, audience and employees know that something big is coming. Talk about it; write about it in emails and newsletter and post about it on social media. Begin laying the foundations that there is to be a special launch or exciting rebrand coming 2-4 weeks prior. This way if they visit your site or interact with your company they don’t think they’ve gone to the wrong place. As well, it’s a great excuse to re-engage and communicate with your customers, build relationships further by asking for their feedback or thoughts.
If you decide to keep elements of the old branding do so in an appropriate manner that pays tribute to it rather than classes or challenges the new identity. Either way once you launch your rebrand remove all evidence of the old brand, don’t let the old branding undermine the new.
If you’re going for the subtle introduction of the brand try not to lose momentum and get 6-12 months down the line and old branding is still circulating. It just gets confusing and hinders the buy in for the new vision.
Take your time but don’t forget to move!
A rebrand can take longer than expected and getting buy in from stakeholders can definitely take longer than you realise. On the other hand, don’t wait for ‘the right time’ or until everything’s ‘perfect’ as you waste time waiting to take the leap.
Check out some of our branding projects