Change is inevitable and for a business to stay fresh and current it is essential that it changes with the times. Often this change can be as significant as an all out rebranding effort. Companies shouldn’t be afraid of reinventing their brand because it truly can be a great way for them to revitalize themselves. However, along with the potential benefits does come the risk of some downfalls. Before you undertake a step as significant as rebranding you should be careful to consider these potential downfalls and you should be aware of some of the most common mistakes that companies make when they rebrand.
Logo Only Rebranding
One of the most frequently made errors is for a company or business to merely change their logo and call it rebranding. A change in the logo by itself does not constitute a full rebranding and if nothing else changes customers will realize that fact and possibly be annoyed by the exaggerated hype. This is especially true if there are more serious problems that do need to be fixed by an actual re-branding effort.
Lack of Research
Before any huge change is made it is imperative that a company do its homework. One small study or focus group isn’t enough. Instead it is important that all the potential ramifications be considered and that the company evaluate its full target audience, not just one small segment. There can be few things more frustrating for a company when going through a hard time to undergo rebranding only to discover that the problem gets worse. An even harsher fate is when a company that is doing well makes a poorly researched decision and sees sales and business plummet as a result.
Marketing Campaign Driven Rebranding
An effective marketing campaign is a huge boon to a company and the potential impact one can make shouldn’t be underestimated. However, it is a bad idea to get so swept up in the enthusiasm that you base an entire company rebranding around a marketing campaign. Most campaigns only have a limited duration of effectiveness before they dry up and the last thing you want is your entire company tied to one that has gone stale. In fact allowing a marketing campaign to drive rebranding is the opposite sort of thinking to use. Instead it is a much better idea to base new marketing campaigns around your rebranding.
Rebranding Decisions Made By Too Many People
It is always good to get lots of feedback and opinions about a big decision; however, not everyone should have a final say in the decisions made. If your rebranding efforts are being made in a committee style format you run the risk of having your target goal become diluted or outright spoiled. Too many concessions to too many people only makes things inefficient and ineffectual, ultimately pleasing no one. Instead do your homework, solicit advice and opinions, and get lots of feedback, but let only a few key individuals make the final the call.
Making Assumptions About Clarity
When you work in a certain industry day in and day out it is only natural to pick up certain key phrases and concepts and assimilate them into your regular communication style. However, it then becomes easy to forget that to outside people these words and ideas are considered “technical” information and are things that they have never heard of. Thus building your logo, company slogan, or other key branding effort around a witty or relevant remark or design will fall on deaf ears if it falls into this category of insider information. Instead you should always focus your rebranding efforts on things that will be immediately and easily understood by the average member of the public.
No Clear Plan
This problem is very similar to the one in which companies fail to do enough research or have too many people leading their rebranding efforts. Basically without a strong, clearly articulated plan if is very easy to lose your way and become bogged down in one step, or breeze by another step and miss something important. Instead your entire rebranding strategy should be laid out and carefully planned for each step of the way before anything is begun.
Ignoring New Information About Your Market
One of the main reasons to rebrand in the first place is so that you can best connect with your current customers and potential customers. To do this you must be well-informed about who your customers are and what appeals to them. Many industries have changing target demographics. Where once an item appealed primarily to one gender, income bracket, age group, or region of the nation it is entirely possible that things have shifted and different groups have become your target demographic. For this reason it is essential to know this information and to plan your re-branding in a way that will resonate with these new people rather than a previous audience who may have already moved on.
As you can see, these seven big potential mistakes are very broad and can happen in a variety of different ways to your rebranding effort. It is important to take all of these obstacles into consideration and to focus on a well-organized, well-thought out plan that makes the most sense for your unique industry and company. Re-branding can be hugely beneficial, but only when it is done right.