Your brand deserves attention –
give it some TLC
This article addresses some of the common fears about modernising your corporate identity and brand which often halt progress at the first fence. But if done properly it can benefit you, your workforce and your audience.
Effective brand identity is achieved by the consistent use of particular visual elements to create distinction, like a house font, colorway or supporting graphic elements. The nucleus of every brand identity is a brand mark or logo. I must add that this article relates to the evolution of an existing corporate identity or brand identity rather than a total corporate rebirth or product launch, and it’s intention is to help you determine whether it’s time for your own brand makeover.
1. It will cost too much.
This is by far the most common reason why ‘not to’ touch your brand and what better reason could there be? The knock-on effect of a complete re-brand is undoubtedly a lengthy and costly exercise. “Enough said let’s leave it there” – wait! My advice here would be evolve the brand over time and introduce changes in smaller steps – this way the cost of the new look would be built into the next print run or advert placement, website update or exhibition in such a way that two generations of corporate ID could co-exist and still retain synergy. It may not be pure in the eyes of a brand guardian but car manufacturers constantly introduce ‘evolutionary’ style changes across their model range without letting a single model get left behind or become a black sheep.
2. Existing customers will not recognise us.
It is a common concern that change could put a lot of goodwill and customer loyalty at risk. I would not condone a rebrand that was a complete U-turn unless the current brand was obviously turning customers away. These days people expect improvements to products and services which cater evermore specifically to the needs of the individual. A modest brand makeover could actually help to reinforce existing customer loyalty by contributing to ‘post purchase justification’ and ultimately attract new ones. We have witnessed improved staff moral in many cases, where employees have reported increased pride and confidence in their own organisation.
3. If it ain’t broke…!
I would be the first to agree that this is a strong argument against a wash and brush up. This attitude suggests that you are obviously doing something right – for now. However, in any marketplace expectations are constantly rising and it is always prudent to keep a close eye on the competition.
4. I’m sceptical about the benefits of a cohesive brand.
I’ve heard this argument many times and usually goes hand in hand with acute niché markets or the very naive. If you are lucky enough to have a product or service that wouldn’t benefit from a clear brand, marketing plan or customer focused service standards then keep up the good work. As for the rest, it could bring on gains that you didn’t expect.
5. People will think we have resurrected a failed business.
Well have you? This mindset might strike fear into the heart of a supplier who’s hanging on for that ‘check in the post’ but if you feel you have found a great name and can provide real value and meaning to your product or service this could be exactly what your brand needs. You can advertise your rebrand as a celebration of success, and at the same time attract interest away from the competition.
At minimum I would recommend an ‘entry level’ brand review. Standardise your logo (colours, scale, position) across every application. This can be done at an administration level, to some extent, but getting someone in who can advise on these rules and help you to manage them doesn’t have to cost the earth, and if done properly will benefit you, your workforce and your audience.