In a fast-moving business world where visuals can play a major role, organizations will often choose to rebrand; they might want to do this to raise brand awareness or simply freshen the image they portray to their customers and potential customers.

While there is no set rule for this, businesses choose to rebrand every 7-10 years on average. Once you have made the decision to rebrand, you then need to strategize ideas before moving to actual designs. How do you get from strategy to design? We offer six tips to help you make those crucial decisions.


6 Tips to Help You From Strategy to Design

Your go-to Guide in Rebranding: 6 Tips to Help You From Strategy to Design

1. Choose your team

Your first step should be to choose a team to oversee the rebranding. You may have this being done inhouse, or you may outsource to a creative agency. You also need to decide what areas you are going to rebrand; this can be anything from a total overhaul to selective factors such as logos, colors, and so on.

As there will likely be multiple ideas involved, you should have some form of a review and approval process too. You can have a manager involved in the team who also has the responsibility to report back to your C-suite so ideas can be signed off. Choose your team wisely; it can be helpful if team members have experience in rebranding and not just new branding and design.

3. Decide what needs changed

Before your team dives into the rebranding process, you need to decide what aspects really need to be changed. That means you need to carry out a brand audit so that you can see what is working or not working. This will help you decide between the total overhaul path or focussing on particular areas that are no longer working. The main areas you want to consider includes:

  • Name of organization.
  • Where you position your brand in the market.
  • Logo.
  • Slogan or motto.
  • Colors used across your designs.
  • Music used on sites or campaigns.
  • Fonts/typography.
  • Advertising and marketing styles.
  • Social media presence.
  • Content (this can cover everything from product descriptions to blogs).
  • Website and app design.

While this is not an exhaustive list, it is the main area your customer base experiences. By using different data sets, including things such as sales and marketing stats, social media interaction, etc., you can see what needs to be prioritized.

6 Tips to Help You From Strategy to Design

3. Focus/test groups

Remember, what you like or your designers like may not be what your customers like. You want to test out new ideas on actual customers or on what you see as new demographic groups you want to target. Depending on the size of your business, you may choose to invest in dedicated focus groups, but if you don’t have the resources, there are other options.

Smaller companies will still have a mailing list and that can allow you to send out surveys on your new ideas. You can also use any social media platforms you utilize to test out different suggestions. If you have identified potential new demographic groups, find out where you can communicate with them, and link them to ideas or ask for suggestions.

4. What works for your competition?

If your branding strategy is outdated and stale, one good tactic is to analyze what is working for your closest competitors. This does not mean plagiarism, but simply seeing what tactics they are using and which are successful. You don’t want to merely follow in their footsteps, you want to switch on that creative indicator and overtake them when it comes to results.

This tip is not just about identifying what your competitors are doing right. It can also identify mistakes they have made (or are making) so that you can either avoid those mistakes or do those particular aspects right. Have their decisions paid off in terms of improved results? If so, you need to find ways of improving even more.

6 Tips to Help You From Strategy to Design

5. Have things changed?

If you have followed the ‘average’ timeline, it may have been 7-10 years since you last rebranded (or originally branded). What has changed in that time? Do you need to reexamine your core values and the message you are trying to convey? What do your customers want? Those factors may be very different since the last time you looked at your branding.

You need to look at all related aspects, from the products you sell (if there has been significant change) through to the customers you target, your business model, and the values you want to be seen communicating. Personalize your brand; is it likable? Write out your brand’s story and see where you want that story to go next, what the next chapters should be.

6. Face up to problems and then focus on relaunch

Don’t think the rebranding route will be a smooth road. There will be issues and there will be bad ideas. As the process moves forward, set aside time for regular meetings that allow for a wide range of collaboration and brainstorming. Don’t be afraid to dismiss ideas that you think will simply not work. Look back at your checklist and ensure each step is being covered properly.

When your process is complete, don’t relaunch with a whimper; you want bells and whistles and fireworks. Tease your audience with glimpses of some of the new designs or other factors. Set a date for the actual relaunch and build anticipation in your audiences. Have them eagerly awaiting the unveiling of all the hard work you and your team have put into the rebranding process.

6 Tips to Help You From Strategy to Design

The takeaway

There are often times when you need to make major business decisions that will have ongoing effects for years to come. It could be a decision to move from an on-premise server to cloud computing, or it could even be a change in location. Rebranding your business is a decision that, on average, could stay with you for as long as 10 years, so you want to get it right.

Don’t rush the process; look at every aspect of your branding, from your company logo to the photos you use on your website. Your branding consists of multiple elements that need to work together to bedazzle your customers, and to attract new customers. By rethinking your branding direction and freshening things up, you could open up lucrative new markets.


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