Brand makeovers don’t need to be triggered by negative events. Brands can reinvent themselves to improve sales, enhance their identity, beat competition or to simply meet the evolving needs of customers due to factors such as technological changes.
Reinventing your brand should be a direct response to market forces. Waiting until things are really bad can be too late to salvage your reputation; so you want to begin thinking of a makeover as soon as the marketplace signals are evident. Ready for a makeover?
Here is a quick guide on how to do it right.
Assess Where You Are and Where You Want to Go
It goes without saying that reinventing your brand is a big deal and it is something you want to carefully analyse before jumping in headfirst. Some questions to help in your stock-taking or brainstorming phase include:
- What are people saying about your brand?
- Which aspects of your business/brand need to be changed?
- Are there negative mentions? If so, what do these mentions share in common?
- What are the positive things people are saying about your brand and what can be done to maintain these positive aspects without making significant overhead increases?
- What aspects of your brand are making customers unhappy and what are the possible solutions to these grievances?
Careful consideration of these questions and the answers is a good place to start, especially if you brand’s reputation has tanked.
Other aspects of your brand that can be reinvented include:
Your brand voice is the tone with which you speak to your audience. As companies become larger or busier, they can easily forget their original brand voice or have an assortment of voices that send mixed messages and may be confusing to your target audience.
Reinventing your brand voice allows you to provide a consistent image of your brand, reposition yourself as an authority in your niche and refresh your content strategy in a way that addresses the evolving needs of your customers and prospects.
Your brand voice can be reinvented in four steps:
- Critically analyse your current content and the tone used
- Concisely describe your brand tone and what you want it to embody e.g. passionate, inspirational, humorous
- Draft a brand voice chart showing the do’s and dont’s of attaining the desired tone across all content types
- Get a content creation team on board with your new brand voice chart
In her book, the Fortune Cookie Principle, Bernadette Jiwa describes a brand story as:
“What they believe about you based on the signals your brand sends…Everything you do, from the colours and texture of your packaging to the staff you hire, is part of your brand story…”
A makeover of your content strategy is the first step to reinventing your brand story. So here’s what you can do:
- Brainstorm the new phrases and words you want to use to describe your brand, including your products and services. As you select your SEO keywords, also consider how your brand is perceived and the ways you can maintain or modify this perception with a new story.
- Rebuild your authority and credibility by publishing guest posts on high domain authority sites. This can give excellent results in the search engines and leverage the authority of other influencers.
- Create new content about your brand based on your new keyword selections. Search engines typically rank new content higher, allowing you to push down any negative content as part of your makeover or online reputation management.
Reimaging your brand does not happen in a vacuum—you already have customers, followers; a community that needs to be kept informed about the changes you are making to your brand. Ignoring your community and then expecting them to continue to engage with you after the makeover may not be a wise move.
So generate early interest in your newly reinvented brand by offering your audience a sneak peak of what to expect, for example by showing them part of your new logo or website before the official launch. Other social best practices include:
- Update all your social media platforms just before the official launch of your new brand. This will ensure a consistent message is conveyed across all your platforms.
- Promote your new brand’s promotional content with your social followers. For example, you could create a video introducing the new brand or distribute a guest post explaining the reasons behind the change and what your customers and prospects can expect from your new brand.
- Make use of paid promotion to reach a wider audience with your new brand. While organic promotion should not be ignored, paid social ads offer a wider reach and can also help your new brand gain new followers in the process.
- Introduce your new brand. Social media is a great way to engage your tribe by explaining to them what your new brand is all about and what it means for your customers and prospects. Leveraging social platforms in this way also offers your audience the opportunity to ask questions, comment and share your new brand with others.
Building a new brand may necessitate a new team—this does not mean you need to fire your entire team. It simply means that you need to decide who is valuable enough to take your brand to the next level, who needs to come in and who needs to be let go. After all, the success of your rebranding efforts largely hinges on the quality and commitment of your team.
For more advice on branding and digital design don’t hesitate to get in touch.