Yes … or to an extent at least. Branding has a huge impact on people’s perceptions of a company. It can affect how much consumers are willing to pay for their services or products and which company they choose.
Part of maintaining effective branding is occasionally rebranding, refreshing your company’s image. This is, however, an extremely tentative process and getting it wrong can have dire consequences. None the less, rebranding is a vital part of branding.
There are a whole host of reasons that lead companies to undergo a rebranding exercise. Below are some of the most important:
- Rebranding can reflect a growing and evolving business, not a stagnating one
- It can have a positive effect on investors for the same reason
- Rebranding gives new life to business, carrying positive internal effects as well as external ones
- Sometimes rebranding is the most proactive means of escaping a bout of bad press
- Following a merger, rebranding is sometimes necessary to reflect the joint qualities of the new company
- The right branding can make it clear exactly what it is your company does, the flipside of this can leave consumers confused and deterred
- It’s proven that people will pay more for a product or service that is effectively branded
Overall rebranding is essentially an exercise in staying current and staying ahead. Companies that see stagnating turnovers can often be revitalised with something as simple as a new logo and some new colours.
Getting it right
While rebranding is an important part of maintaining your competitive edge it’s also a delicate process, and the reverse of the potential success coin is the threat of potential disaster.
Rebranding should, more often than not, be an issue of evolution rather than revolution. Stripping your brand’s identity of everything that made it instantly recognisable to customers beforehand can cause them to lose trust in your company.
This is because that trust is intrinsically linked to a company’s image – their brand.
In every case, branding should be approached from an outside-in perspective. Branding is all about customer perceptions and therefore rebranding shouldn’t be any different.
The point is to try and avoid focusing on fancy new logos and designs that please you and more on what the customer sees and what they have come to expect from you.
Perhaps one of the best examples of branding gone wrong is GAP, in 2010. They decided they wanted to relaunch their brand with a new logo. The public, however, had a different idea; they hatedit. Within just six days of launching their rebrand, GAP was forced to revert their branding.
The whole pointless exercise cost them an estimated $100 million.
The lesson here is that GAP clearly didn’t conduct their market research first. A few focus groups and a different approach could have helped them get it right or inform them that they simply didn’t need a rebrand and that people liked it just the way it was.
Volkswagen are currently in the process of rebranding to meet developing market trends and to coincide with their evolving business model, having recently revealed their refreshed logo, which you could swear is just a flat version of the old one.
Their rebrand is aimed at making the brand more approachable and coinciding with their move towards electric vehicles, as well as portraying the innovations that justify the brand’s new higher price tags.
So yes, looking good is the key to success or one of them at least. But ensuring you continue to look good is just as important.
Rebranding is a vital part of a business’ marketing strategy but is also a delicate process that requires proper consideration and a fair amount of expert help.
Getting it right can revitalise a brand and provide a massive boost but getting it wrong can have extremely negative results.
If you’re looking to breathe new life into your company’s brand, make sure you check out Formation’s branding services. Don’t go the way of GAP.