When you started your business 10+ years ago, you might have thought you had the greatest logo out there. It had a cutting-edge design and the most trendy colors. Your customers loved working with you and to say the least, your brand and entire operation looked pretty slick! Since then, times have changed and so have colors, the technology you use, and perhaps your products and services, too. That leads us to the million dollar question. Are you in need of a brand refresh?
Now, before we answer that question, it’s important to remember that your brand isn’t just a pretty logo and a catchy tagline slapped on your website and some marketing materials. Visual branding is only a part of the equation. Seth Godin once said that “A brand’s value is merely the sum total of how much extra people will pay, or how often they choose, the expectations, memories, stories and relationships of one brand over the alternatives.” We couldn’t agree more.
If you’ve ever heard RPS CEO Amanda Sutt talk about branding, you’ve probably heard her say it’s the manifestation of a business or organization’s beliefs and values shown through its products and services, experiences, and interactions, as well as how the audiences connects to the business or organization. It’s also what they think and feel as they experience the brand. In addition, Amanda always emphasizes that branding is what differentiates you from the competition, which can help breed loyal customers and even allow you to charge more for your products and services.
Now, back to the main question. Here are a few reasons you might need a brand refresh:
- You want to expand but regionality is a part of your business’ positioning
- Your look is dated and you want to re-energize
- You’re completely rebranding with a new name and look
- Or your name no longer aligns with your original vision
- You no longer stand out from the competition
- There has been or will be a merger with or acquisition of another company
- You’re not attracting the talent you want to employ
- You want to reach new audiences
- The overall look and feel of your brand is no longer relevant
If you agree with any of the above statements, congratulations! It’s time to refresh your brand! Now it may sound like a daunting process, but we believe the process can (and should) be fun. We’ll be the first to tell you that there are a lot of elements to include in the process, but it’s well worth the work to transform your brand and grow it into what it needs to become. Some of the factors you need to consider during the brand refresh process include:
- Research: This includes research of your business, current marketing efforts, the industry, your competition, and your audience (customers, prospects, and employees).
- Creating buyer personas: Buyer personas are a representation of a person who acts on or makes a purchase decision, or someone who actively seeks branded content. In many cases, this is someone that already uses your products or services. You can even take it a step further and create customer avatars so you have a fictional character representing all your customer types to make it easy for your team to put themselves in your customer’s shoes.
- Start developing your messaging: At RPS, we’re firm believers in content first, then creative. Your messaging should showcase your unique position in the market and cover the basics like who you are and what you have to offer, as well as give your audience information about your culture – the reasons behind why you do what you do and how you do it, what working with you is like, how it benefits them, etc. Basically, your messaging needs to capture your audience from a rational and emotional standpoint.
- Logo and visual branding updates: Once you have expressed how you’re different, it’s time to show it. Your visual identity includes not only your logo, but also colors, fonts, photography styles, textures, and more. Your visual branding should convey your brand in a compelling way.
- Inspect your communication system: Before you share your new look, take some time to look at how you communicate internally and externally, as well as anything your logo is on – emails, your website, proposals, social media, letterhead, signs, etc., and use this as your checklist for what needs to be updated with the new branding.
- Plan how you will reveal your refreshed brand: One of the last steps in refreshing your brand is to create a strategic plan for revealing the changes. How you roll it out will largely depend on how extensive the changes are. Regardless, this an exciting update and you want to use that excitement as your momentum for launching your new look and feel within your business as well as to your audience. If it’s a major change, you’ll want to be sure you let your employees, clients, and prospects know the reasons behind the change and you may need to launch the brand in a series of phases.
Thinking about a brand refresh for your business or organization? Rock Paper Scissors can help! Contact us to learn more about our process and how we can help you become the brand you want to be.