Are you considering rebranding your business? Unfortunately, this process of making changes to your brand identity is rarely as straightforward as it first seems. It does not matter whether you’re only planning subtle updates, like making small tweaks to your logo or company colors, or sweeping overhauls, such as name changes and complete renovations to all of your physical locations—there will be headaches.
Thorough planning based on a clear rebranding strategy ahead of getting started on the tactical work—of fabricating new signage, remodeling interior spaces, and everything else that comes with such a project—will get you well on your way to a successful rebrand.
However, managing all of the moving parts of rebranding, such as locating and coordinating vendors and contractors, obtaining permits from local municipalities for your signs, and other project management and administrative details can quickly derail the process and cost your business thousands of dollars. That is why you need expert help from branding pros like us here at Egan Sign. Getting us involved in the beginning stage allows our Sign Management Process to finish the job on time and finishing it right!
Here are a few tips to help the rebranding process go smoothly.
Understand Your Reasons for Rebranding
The decision to rebrand your business is not one that should be arrived at casually. Changing your branding—and especially your name—affects every aspect of your business. Rebranding impacts not only your marketing efforts, but it can affect even banal details, like the name on your mailbox and how your business gets found on Google.
Rebranding always brings with it some degree of customer confusion, even if you undertake an aggressive campaign to alert your audiences to the coming changes. If not handled well, you run the risk of alienating those loyal customers with your rebrand.
So, why would anyone rebrand if it’s so problematic? Often, the potential rewards outweigh those risks, as you can attract new customers and potentially increase your current customers’ satisfaction with a refreshed or new brand identity.
These are three big reasons, two of which are situations in which you don’t really have a choice.
1. Revitalization of Tired Branding
For companies with a lot of what’s known as “brand equity,” the decision to rebrand often comes with the perceived need to keep up with changing trends and appear “fresh” in order to attract new customers and keep current customers interested.
Rebranding for these kinds of businesses can also help express how they have grown and changed over time. Think of how Facebook recently tweaked its logo to show that the company is “growing up,” and you’ll get a sense of why rebranding can be beneficial for a business that’s already doing relatively well, but maybe needs some brand “remodeling.”
The significant benefits you gain from refreshing your current brand identity include attracting new target audiences and putting on a more authentic face for the public that better reflects your business’s identity right now.
2. Acquisition of Other Companies
One of the main reasons clients come to us here at Egan Sign for help with rebranding is because their business acquired another, and all the locations need to reflect a unified identity. A business acquisition may necessitate the newly acquired locations adopting a current brand identity of the main business. (See our Case Study about Mid Penn Bank’s acquisition of First Priority Bank for an excellent example of this type of project.)
Of course, you may also need to merge the established brands and create a new brand identity for every location and property in your expanded business’s portfolio. This is probably one of the most complex types of rebranding processes.
3. Differentiation from Competitors
Sometimes, rebranding is done on a somewhat “emergency” basis, as businesses with similar names need to quickly differentiate themselves for a variety of reasons. Our Case Study about Customers Bank’s fast transformation following a similarly-named competitor’s highly publicized failures shows how and why rebranding must sometimes take place almost overnight. (Note that while Egan Sign is more than capable of helping your brand through such a crisis scenario, we don’t recommend jumping into a rebranding project with so little pre-planning!)
Regardless of your reasons for rebranding—providing you’re not dealing with a branding crisis like our friends at Customers Bank—you will want to follow this significant rebranding rule:
Make Sure Your Rebranding Strategy Aligns With Your Overall Marketing Strategy
Obviously, lightning-quick rebranding is sometimes unavoidable, and forces outside your business’s control drive your decision-making. In these cases, your marketing strategy should mainly focus on supporting your rebranding after the fact.
However, if you are rebranding based on acquiring and merging with other business entities with your own, or you’re undertaking a refresh project, as we discussed above, you need to fully ensure that your marketing strategy is not at odds with your rebranding decision. If your marketing efforts can not justify a rebrand in the short-term, it’s time to do some marketing planning and push your rebranding into the future. Otherwise, you could end up wasting a lot of money and time.
You need to carefully consider how your rebranding will affect the marketing you’re currently doing. Consider the effects not just at the tactical level—which includes taking stock of every place you’ll need to change your logo—but at the strategic level of whether a rebrand is absolutely necessary at this point. If it will merely create undue confusion among your customer base, you may be rushing into a rebranding project.
Carefully Plan Your Rebranding Rollout
Creating calendars and plans—not to mention obtaining buy-in from stakeholders throughout your organization (including your customers)—is key to ensuring a successful rebrand. You will need to sketch out timelines and stick to them for various stages of the rebranding process. Also, realize that your project could take many months (or even years!) from the initial planning stages to the actual launch.
Does this all sound extremely complicated? If so, our final piece of advice for you is…
Get Expert Help With Your Rebranding Strategy and Project Execution
The best way to alleviate the headaches that come with rebranding—or with the initial branding of a new business—is to hire an experienced resource who can take over the entire process for you. Here at Egan Sign, we are that resource for companies across the United States and Canada.
Whether you have 10 physical locations or 10,000, we can help you achieve a successful rebrand by providing everything from interior painting and signage installation to permitting and exterior branding. Our Egan Sign 360 project management process also gives you the best customer service and guidance in the business. Get in touch with us today to learn more.