6 Signs It's Time to Rebrand

Sometimes rebrands can be critical to the survival of a company. It's a natural cycle that all brands go through at some point in their lifetime, but how do you know when is the right time to pull the trigger? It's often hard to notice the red flags while managing the day-to-day madness of running a business. Even if you do notice them, the decision to actually commit to rebranding is never an easy one. So how are you supposed to know when it's time to pick up the phone and call us, the top NC marketing agency, to rebrand your business?

What Does Rebranding Mean?

A rebrand is the process of reshaping how a company or product is perceived by the public. Rebranding can include everything from changing the business's name and tagline, its logo and visual identity, and even its website and marketing collateral.The most effective rebrands start with lots of research! Findings from the research phase inform the strategy or brand positioning phase, where a brand is repositioned according to its customers' needs and marketplace opportunities.After the research and strategy phase is complete, we can then move into recreating the identity. This is when the visual and verbal identities of the "new" brand are conceptualized. Visual identity includes logos, colors, typography, and photography/videography. Verbal includes names, taglines, and messaging.The identity phase of the rebrand typically culminates with the redesign of a website and marketing collateral. Which are both introduced to the world upon the final stepping stone - the brand activation phase.

Why Rebrand?

Now onto the real question, why rebrand in the first place? First off, a strong brand presence makes it more likely for consumers to choose your product or service over the competition.A strong brand will ultimately attract more customers, who are willing to pay more, buy more, and value your business more.

True customer loyalty and strong brand awareness help drive revenue, develop more efficient and reliable products, as well as generate more shareholder value in the process. Not only does a strong brand build equity, it also helps attract and retain your business's next most valuable asset: employees.

Unfortunately, however, even the strongest of brands expire after too long. Due to always-changing markets, shifts in priorities of customers, and a billion other forces beyond a company's control, branding tends to be fresh and relevant for about five to ten years. This is why rebranding is so important to the success of any business.Understanding the many reasons to rebrand leads most to the question, "why haven't I done this sooner?" Always remember it's not a question of if your company will need a rebrand, it's when will it need one?

6 Signs It's Time to Rebrand

How do you know when the right time is though? The timing can be difficult to pinpoint, and changes for every business - however, there are a few signs that a rebrand with an NC marketing agency is necessary.

1. Your brand name no longer reflects your vision

One of the most apparent signs to rebrand is awful brand names. What seemed like a great idea 20 years ago no longer represents your brand or what it's about. It happens to all of us, don't fret.

Changes in cultural context can alter the meaning of a name accidentally. Other times, the name just doesn't feel appropriate for what the brand has in store for the future. If Larry Page and Sergey Brin hadn't changed the name of their company back in the day, we'd still be calling Google by its original name: BackRub.

You shouldn't let your brand's name drag down the brand itself. A strong name is the foundation of your brand's entire identity. It's the calling card so to speak, it's what is seen front and center on every item your business produces. Your brand's name should be differentiating, unique and, above all, memorable.Renaming can definitely be harder than it sounds. The daunting task of picking a name that is both meaningful and original is just the first half. There are also challenges with trademarking, obtaining URLs and social media channels with your newly selected name.

2. You're embarrassed to give someone your business card

This happens more times than you would imagine. If you feel like you should issue a disclaimer before handing someone your business card or sending them a link to your website – it's probably time to rebrand.

If you're embarrassed about your brand, it's highly likely that your fellow employees feel the same way. This can cause a major drag on both external promotion and internal morale in the workplace.

Brand embarrassment doesn't always necessarily mean you need to rebrand from the ground up! It could be that your brand's visual or verbal identities need a quick refresh. A cosmetic solution, if you will. A brand refresh with an NC marketing agency is essentially a restructure of your brand's look and feel. This leaves your initial "brand DNA" intact for fundamental market positioning and can have a substantial impact on an outdated brand identity.

3. Your brand is struggling to stand out

When your brand starts to blend in with those around it – it's time to rebrand.

Branding is all about competitive differentiation. However, you'd be surprised by how many businesses aren't able to clearly communicate what makes their brand unique.

When you don't have unique brand differentiators, your business's sales and growth can struggle. It's extremely important that both your employees and customers understand why your brand is superior to its competition.

Rebranding can help redefine your brand's identity, including your competitive advantage. The thing that your brand does better than any of your competitors. No competitive advantage is as powerful or sustainable as a strong brand presence. Having a strong brand enables you to compete whether you have an advantage over your competitors or not.

4. Your brand has become complicated

Does your brand feel like a thrown-together mix of a bunch of random offerings with no underlying brand narrative? If so, it may be time to rebrand your business.

Keeping a brand on focus over an extended period of time can be extremely challenging. Especially for large organizations that have grown exponentially. A lack of brand focus poses serious challenges to your brand's effectiveness.

Unfocused brands tend to resort to outright copying their competition. These results come from undefined value propositions and lack of general awareness.The more complex your brand is, the more confusing it is for customers to understand it. Don't bore your audience. If you find that your brand's messaging has your consumers dozing off, it may be time to take a step back to simplify and focus on what's really important. A rebrand is the best possible way to get this type of outside-looking-in perspective.

5. Your business model has changed

If you change, or plan on changing your brand's business model or strategy, it would be wise to rebrand at the same time with an NC marketing agency.

Like mentioned before, it's almost impossible to predict the outside forces that will mandate changes in your business operations. But when your business model changes, so should your brand. The perception your brand gives off to those it serves should always align with the way it operates behind the scenes.

When altering your brand to adapt to a change in your business, you should start at the foundation: your brand compass. The rebrand process begins with solidifying your company's purpose, vision, mission, and values.

Questions you should ask yourself are as follows. Why does my company exist? Where is it headed? How will we get it there? Which values define your company culture?

Being able to clearly articulate these guidelines is the starting point for any rebrand. Your brand compass provides a foundation for your brand to build on, and sets a clear path to your brand's future success.

6. You've outgrown your brand

The most common reason for a rebrand. Knowing when to rebrand your business can be as easy as realizing your current self has outgrown what you used to be.

Even if you are a stickler for brand management, there will come a time when you've outgrown your original intentions. It's not so much a question of if, but when.

When rebranding to account for growth, you don't necessarily leave your old shell of a brand in the dust. While there are probably some weaknesses in your brand, there are likely just as many strengths that can still be used moving forward.

By running an internal diagnostic of your brand and its image you are able to determine what to focus on with deliberate intent. Using this technique will help solidify strengths within your brand, as well as strengthen the areas that need attention.

So, You've Decided to Rebrand. What's Next?

Once you've decided to move forward with a rebrand, it's important to find the right team for your project. If you're going to invest time and money into your brand, at least make sure it's being done right.  At Red Shark Digital, we offer complete rebrand and identity services to our customers who need a little help sprucing up their outdated look. Contact the best NC marketing agency today to get started on your rebrand project.