Rethinking the Rebrand


Rebranding is a term that needs to be reconsidered

“We don’t need a whole new brand, maybe just a rebrand.” It’s a common phrase we hear from our clients as we start talking about how they present themselves to their audiences.

We do our best to avoid this phrase.

The term “rebrand” asks that you think less of your brand. It asks that you think of your brand only in terms of the things you can change, such as your logo and tagline. But your brand isn’t a one-way street. It’s supported by the thoughts and emotions people have when they see it. These are things that can’t be changed overnight with a fresh coat of paint and some nice words. It takes strategy, creativity and time to change the perceptions and meaning around your brand.

That’s why we feel “rebrand” is a bit bogus. You can’t remake your brand from scratch. You can rethink it, refresh it, even redefine it–but there’s no starting over. Good branding isn’t always about revolution, but evolution.

If you think your identity could use a touchup, ask yourself these three questions:

What are your values?

Your brand stands for something. Nike stands for achievement. Coca-Cola stands for refreshment. If your current identity and messaging don’t stand for something you value and believe in, you can’t expect them to resonate with the customers you want. Before listing the things you want to change about your brand, try listing the ones you can’t.

What is not working?

Many brands we work with carry a deep history. While treating them with the care and respect they deserve, we often find pieces that simply don’t make sense to current audiences or employees. Maybe it’s a logo that’s been around for years, but no one knows what it originally meant. Or a color that may be a bit too loud for your industry. These elements must evolve.

What are you waiting for?

For most, the decision to re-evaluate their brand is a scary one, and seemingly impossible to commit to. We understand. We’ve evolved own brand over the years, so it’s with absolute confidence that we tell you: there’s never an ideal time. Start now. Delaying the conversation means your brand stays out there, potentially misrepresenting your company and costing you new business.

Making critical changes to your brand may be frightening–especially if you’re handling it internally, where bias and emotions can cloud good judgment. If you’re suffering from a confused corporate identity, don’t design a shiny new logo and call it a rebrand. Instead, talk through your pain points, find areas that may not be clear for your customers and evolve your identity in a way that works for everyone who sees it. Your business deserves the effort and that effort will pay dividends over your brand’s entire lifetime.