Rebranding: Why and how?

By Laura Nijhuis

Rebranding is the repositioning of your brand. There are many reasons. For example, there may be outdated branding that no longer suits the company, a merger, the internationalization of a company or a new positioning. Thus, any company may at some point decide to re rebrand. Rebranding can take place on a small scale, such as by merely adjusting the logo, but it can also take place on a large scale. Then the entire branding is shaken up: from brand name to font usage. But how do you tackle a (complete) rebranding?

Before you start

Before you embark on a major rebranding and start throwing money at it, it's a good idea to sit down and get it clear on paper and describe what you want to achieve. Who do you want to reach with the new brand? When do you want to bring out the rebrand? It is a long process, which will have to be handled well for the best results. It is therefore important to have a plan of action. This article is a good outline, but you are of course, always free to make your own additions!

Your brand

Start the rebranding process by writing down the vision of your current brand, as well as that of the new brand. What are the adjustments you would like to make in this area? What is the added value of rebranding to your goals, for example? These are a few questions you will definitely need to ask yourself before embarking on a rebrand. Take the old vision and make it new!

Listen to the target audience

There is an interaction between a company and its target audience. The company offers a product or service that the target group wants, and the target group purchases that product - provided it meets expectations. This is why it is important to also listen to the customers when doing a rebranding! Research who your target audience is and what they expect from you as a company. Make sure that you, as a company, match these (new) desires of the target audience.

Is this the right time?

Think about why the rebranding needs to happen right now. Also keep in mind that the process of implementing a rebrand will take a while - so there is a fair amount of time between the decision and the final implementation. How will this rebranding be launched? Do you want to change everything at the same time or rather in phases and thus spread out over a longer period of time? These are things you need to think about carefully before you start rebranding. Be especially critical and also let others assess your motivation - they can offer a different perspective.

And now?

You now know what you want to convey, to whom, and why you want to do it right now. Have it checked with some colleagues’s to make sure you can make all the right choices.

You can now get busy rebranding! In a few steps, you can go through this process. It is a long process, but at the end it's totally worth it - provided the process is properly executed.

And now?

1. Why rebranding?

At the start of your rebranding, it's good to capture the motivation: why are we doing this? What is the added value of the changes you want to make? With a good motivation you are more driven to put down a good rebrand. In addition, the target group you previously set up, needs to understand the motivation behind your rebranding. It is useful if you have a clear picture for yourself; this makes communicating with the target audience regarding the rebranding easier. It also helps when communicating to other parties who may be interested in the rebranding, such as customers.

2. You can't do it alone

Of course, you don't do such a rebranding on your own; after all, a lot has to be done. That goes faster and more effectively if you work together. First of all, it is handy to have someone from the marketing, design, and/or communications industry involved with this process. These people can give you a different insight when rebranding - an external and professional insight in their own field(s) of expertise.

In addition to involving external professionals, it is also good to involve colleagues in the process of rebranding. The goal is to give employees a sense of commitment to the company and the brand. This is an ideal way to work on that; two birds with one stone! In addition, through the participation of colleagues’s good ideas can emerge, which also increases the sense of involvement. come up, which also increases the sense of involvement.

Finally, it is important to appoint an executive for the rebranding. Someone who is ultimately responsible for the rebranding and the communication surrounding it. This person can keep an overview of the process.

3. A new name

Now the process really becomes concrete. It probably involves some uncertainty: a name has to fit your business, of course! A strong brand name generally has the following characteristics:

  1. Simple & short: rolls off the tongue easily and is easy to remember.
  2. Lively, but not too funny: Boring is bad, but you have to be careful with jokes - not everyone will be able to appreciate it.
  3. Timeless: a name that can last is preferred.
  4. Unique: you want to avoid confusion with other companies, of course.

Don't worry too much about a brand name; after all, it's mostly about the branding behind the brand name. Make a list of options for a brand name and also justify why these names will work. Don't be afraid to sleep on it another night; Rome wasn't built in a day either.

4. Do brand research

As mentioned earlier, of course you want to have a unique name! To check if your idea for a new brand name is unique, you can look in the TM View register and/or in the EU IPO Register. If an identical or similar name can be found in either of these registers, it may be better to opt for an alternative. You will also need to look into a new domain name for your website. You can check its availability at GoDaddy. At this part of the process, it is not unwise to hire a specialist. They can look at the success rate of the new brand name; this prevents unexpected objections and other woes surrounding the new name.

5. A new identity

Now that you have a brand name, the rest of your company's identity goes up a notch. In addition to the corporate identity, you will need to update your existing core values. Think carefully about what you want to convey and make sure this is reflected in the new identity. Also in this step it is good to use an external company. They can help with building a new identity and the corporate identity to match. Before they can do this, you must of determine what your core values are. Then draw up a number of core values that fit the new identity. In addition, it is good to look at the future plans of the company. Also, of course, the style will have to provide distinction and visibility of the company. Once a style has been developed that fits the new identity, you can move on to the next step!

6. Online presence

These days, as a business, you really can't do without a website and social media. Now that there is a new identity, the website and social media have to go with it. If you change the name, it starts with a new domain name. The best way to do this, is use a domain name that is the same as the brand name. In step 4 we already briefly looked at that. When you have a unique brand name, this will not have too many snags. Is the brand name less unique? Then chances are you will have more difficulty finding a suitable domain.

Having a domain is only step 1. Of course, it's also important to have a website that matches your new branding. The design should be based on the corporate identity. Here you will most likely have to use an outside company.

Next, of course, social media will also need to be rebranded to the new corporate identity. On social media this can be done quickly; new logo, new header and new info about your company and you're on your way!

Am I ready now?

Am I ready now?

Almost! Now that you've gathered all this information and designs, you can create a script. This playbook gives a structure to the final rebrand. You need to choose whether you want a phased rebranding, or change everything at once. In this chosen period (short or long), (almost) everything has to be changed. The new identity must be applied everywhere in all forms of communication, internal and external. Social media, the website, invoices & business cards. Everyone must be informed about the rebranding: customers and family, but also the bank, for example. For media attention it is a good idea to inform the press. Last, but not least, it is important to change your name at any business register you might be entered. And then you're finally done rebranding!

Long process you say?

Yes it is! But if you go through this properly and take your time, the results will definitely be there. Besides, it is of course not necessary to go through all these steps in a small-scale rebranding. We would like to give you the following tips: Only go for designs and ideas that you are truly satisfied and confident with, and work together!

Want to rebrand but need some help? That's understandable! KNALGEEL can help with repositioning or rebranding your brand. Let's get a a cup of coffee and talk it over!

Written by
Laura Nijhuis

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