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Signals for rebranding

Typically, thoughts of rebranding start to pop up when things aren’t as they should be: a drop in sales, a spike in customer complaints, low employee morale. If you already have a business strategy, brand promise, and brand positioning, revisit all three to see if your company is holding true to them. Were your client surveys and market research done several years ago? If so, you may have lost the pulse on your client’s perception of your organization and the changing marketplace.

“A brand is a person’s gut feeling about a product, service, or company…A brand is not what you say it is. It’s what they say it is.” – Marty Neumeier

After careful review of your business strategy and brand strategy consider these signs that a rebrand might be needed:

You squirm when you look at your stodgy, non-differentiated marketing materials. The feeling starts as you realize what your clients are seeing.

Falling behind
You look up from your desk and see that your competition has kept up with the changing trends in your client’s behavior. Perhaps you missed that 90% of executives use smartphones to research business purchases, and 46% use tablets to research business purchases. A full 34% didn’t purchase because of a non-mobile friendly website. [Source: Google/Forbes survey of 500 executives]

Blending in
Your key messages can easily be swapped for another organization. When you cover up your logo and company name, is your message indistinguishable from other competitors as in these samples?

    A.) XYZ Company is a world-class general contracting and construction management firm. For over twenty-five years XYZ has been, and continues to be, dedicated to an environment of honesty, trust, and integrity.

    B.) Since 1948 XYZ Construction has delivered outstanding commercial construction projects. From our first project our goal has been to deliver quality construction, on time and in budget, quality, leadership, responsiveness and customer service with every commercial construction project.

    C.) Established in 1991, XYZ Organization has developed a reputation for providing the highest level of construction service and excellence. This includes continually maintaining our reputation for integrity, fairness, dependability, and completing your project on time and on budget.

No heartbeat
Your customers have no emotional tie with your company. Your current messaging and visuals have stuck to the nuts and bolts of the services you offer. You haven’t let the world see what your company’s culture is like or your company’s community involvement. Stating only the bare minimum about your company and a laundry list of services without any personality does nothing to rally your clients to be loyal to your brand.

Legal misstep
Did your intention to check on trademarks and copyrights evaporate like those Valentine Day chocolates? Every so often an organization is forced to rebrand due to legal issues—for instance, picking the same name as another company. Make sure you go through your legal checklist and choose protectable business names.

If you’ve missed signals that your brand is starting to veer off its mark, you may need a total overhaul. Or maybe it’s only a specific area of your brand that needs tweaking, such as your key messages to clients and prospects. Don’t let your day-to-day responsibilities keep you from seeing your brand through your clients’ eyes.

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