A brand is one of the most important aspects of many businesses. Whether you’re a fashion label, law firm or tech giant, your brand is (or at least should be) the embodiment of all you stand for – your values, your proposition, products and services and differentiates you from your competitors. The term ‘brand’ has become rather ambiguous today, to include everything from customer experiences to social media activity, but the core of a brand always starts at the name and logo – the essence of its identity and equity - with everything else building out from there.
Given this, the process of rebranding a business can seem daunting – how do you achieve it without damaging equity, perceptions and customer loyalty in the process? There are genuine risks and costs associated with both over and undercooking it. So what are your options? Below, we’ve summarised some of the options you have when considering the next steps in the evolution of your company’s brand.
For us at OrangeDoor, a ‘rebrand’ includes a complete name change. We rebranded to OrangeDoor from HAMG360 a couple of years’ back and as part of this, redeveloped every element of our brand, including logos, colour palettes, tone of voice and as well as refining and redefining our business. There is no doubt a rebrand is a big change and so needs to be carefully considered and thought through. In our case it was driven by recognition that the HAMG360 brand was no longer a true representation of our business.
A partial-rebrand often involves changing the name of a business, but keeping an element of the previous name for a degree of brand continuity. A popular option is moving to an abbreviation, two high profile examples of this were PriceWaterhouseCooper becoming PWC and GlaxoSmithKline rebranding to GSK. Other high profile examples are are Wilko (Wilkinson’s) and Lotto (The National Lottery). This is a great option when there is considerable equity in your existing brand, and allows a lot of change without losing brand recognition. Partial-rebrands often keep the same colour palette, at least initially, to further enhance brand recognition through the transition.
Sometimes the name might still be relevant, but the logo or typography is what’s holding a brand back. Logos can become dated, with design styles going out of fashion and looking out of place among more modern competitors as time goes on. A refresh keeps the same name but brings everything else up to date. Think Pepsi’s logo changing over time, or Apple going from the rainbow coloured apple of iMac fame to the clean modern icon it now uses.
A brand evolution differs from a refresh in that the name, logo and typography stays the same, but the colour palette, tone of voice or other elements change, to evolve the overall brand in a relatively subtle way. This could be as minor as changing your brand’s content fonts or updating your website with more up to date images, or it could be as large as Ebay’s recent colour palette change, which has injected a new energy across a range of its marketing campaigns.
Revisiting and refining your company values and sharing these with customers can help change the perceptions of your brand without touching the brand itself – as long as the new values are still in line with the visual representation of it! Changing how your customer service and salespeople interact with customers may change customer views of you, and adding new products or services can do the same. An exciting new product makes your brand seem more exciting – even if that’s the only change.
However you decide you want your brand to change, we recommend you work with an agency that understands your brand, where you’re coming from and where you’re trying to get to. Any major brand change should always be supported by a marketing strategy, with competitor research and customer analysis informing any transformation of your brand.
To discuss a rebrand, refresh or other development of your brand, get in touch with our creative studio by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or if you’d like to read about our rebrand, you can do so here.