If you’re an SME looking to make your mark, a brand refresh could be the best investment your company makes. So how do you know when it’s time for a refresh?
1) It’s been a while since you last even thought about your branding
What your organisation stood for five years ago when you first invested in your brand identity is likely to have changed. And even if you haven’t moved on, your competitors have. If your company’s branding looks outdated, that’s going to send a message that you’re behind the times, too.
So if it’s been a few years since you last really thought about your logo, you probably need to start thinking about a branding refresh.
2) Your offer has changed
Organisations and marketplaces change all the time. If your company has recently grown, diversified, entered a new sector or geography, now’s the ideal time to think about your brand and check it still works for you and your customers.
3) Your visual identity is inconsistent
Organisations who’ve got their branding right always have one thing in common – consistent use of their visual branding right across all channels. From your website to your packaging and promo materials, if your customers don’t see consistency when they see your brand, it sends out a subtle message that you’re not an organised outfit. And that’s not good for business. If you’re looking a little out of kilter, it could be time for a refresh.
4) You want to reach new customers
A brand refresh can be the best way to get you noticed by new customers, as well as a great way to create a buzz about your business in your existing marketplace. Get it right, and it can be game-changer.
5) You’re looking to the future
If you’re about to enter a period of real growth or change, start your brand refresh now, so you’ve got a clear and compelling brand and visual identity to successfully carry your business into its next exciting phase.
So, you think you need a brand refresh. What now?
1) First up – take a long hard look at yourself
Your brand refresh isn’t just about changing your logo or updating your website – although these are undoubtedly crucial elements of your brand and one of the first things your customers will notice about you.
Any good brand refresh needs to start with a long, hard look at where your organisation is at today and where it is headed; what makes you stand out from the crowd? What gives your competitive edge? Crucially, what are you all about right now?
2) Play to your strengths
Once you’ve done your thinking and self-reflection, build on that to define a strong customer offer and clear values for your organisation. Then take these as the starting point for creating a compelling visual identity that really speaks to your customers about who you are.
3) Check out the competition
What do your competitors look like? How do they present themselves through their brand? Have they had a makeover lately? Depending on your marketplace, what your competitors are doing could make a big difference to how your rebrand might look.
4) Talk to your customers
Test some ideas out with your customers – existing and target. See what they think, listen to their feedback and be prepared to go back to the drawing board if your new branding doesn’t hit the mark with the people you’re trying to sell to.
5) Talk to the experts
If you’re serious about making your business a success, invest in the professional and objective support of a branding specialist who can take you through the whole rebrand process, from initial planning to final design and adoption, to make sure your rebrand really delivers.