Being aware of your brand perception in the marketplace is vital to the life of your business.
Customers will vote with their feet if they feel out of touch or alienated by your brand.
If sales are dropping, or your brand is looking & feeling a little stale, even if you are considering new direction, perhaps its time to look at rebranding.
Lets take a look at some of the reasons why you could or possibly should look at rebranding within your business.
New Trends/Demands: Response to market trends or demands may see the need to tweak or rebrand your business products or services, to meet customer needs and desires and create increased customer loyalty.
New Products: The launch of new products can sometimes facilitate the need to rebrand, particularly if there is a change in direction of the business.
New Owners: This perhaps is more relevant if you have bought an existing business and you want to reflect the changes that new ownership will bring to the existing market.
New Competitors: If your market is suddenly inundated with competition, there may be cause to rebrand to differentiate yourself as the leader in your field.
New Markets: Changing gears and entering new markets can cause confusion to your existing customers by muddying brand messaging. Rebranding may be necessary to reflect the new direction of your business and finding opportunities.
New Look: Sometimes you just need to freshen the look to keep up with the times.
New Year: Celebration of ‘X’ years in business, might be a good reason to revamp your look.
New Partners/Joint Ventures: It may be necessary to rebrand if you are changing your structure to include other products from partners or joint ventures. Customers want to understand the benefits of new product offerings, that might not be well explained under your current brand strategy.
Rebranding In Action:
If we take a look at Woolworths for example, they went through a rebranding exercise around 3 years or so ago, which incorporated a few of the above rationales, and has worked well for them.
Their rebrading strategy encompassed the incorporation its Safeway stores under the Woolworths brand to create more unity. Introduction of a fresh new logo, and rounded out with a refurbishment of their stores to include wider aisles, and brighter supermarkets.
Woolworths is an old brand (founded 1909) and although the company has been through rebranding exercises over the years, their most recent has probably met with the most customer acknowledgment.
However rebranding is not always a smooth process.
Woolworths has met with some issues with regard to its new logo with Apple issuing legal action, claiming that it was too close in resemblance to its own.
I’m assuming as Woolworths logo is still proudly on display that no further action has come of this, or its still pending.
When considering rebranding you should carefully weigh the possible impact of making changes.
Considerations Before Rebranding:
- What your objectives are – why do you want to rebrand, whats the purpose/anticipated results?
- What your market wants – how will your rebrand effect all stakeholders, not just your customers.
- What elements will be rebranded – website, store, staff, logo, media packs, publications, etc
- Who will be responsible – assigning tasks and followups so the brand rollout runs smoothly
- How will you measure results – what systems or mechanisms will you use for measuring results and tracking the impact of your rebranding exercise.
Rebranding can be minor tweaks or a major overhaul. It depends on what you are wanting to achieve.
Small business and solo operators have the advantage in that they can maneuver through the process more efficiently than big players, which is a huge advantage when responding to the demands of the market.
Consideration of brand does play a major role in the buying decisions of consumers and being an online business allows you to transcend global boundaries.
Don’t let your brand fade into obscurity. Maybe its time for a kick in the pants??
What are your thoughts on rebranding, please leave your comments below.
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