Change is both terrifying and exciting... but most importantly, it's inevitable. It is the driving force behind the growth that allows brands to capitalise on current and future market opportunities. But for marketers, change can be a tough task to tackle, especially when it comes to rebranding.
Here's how you can tell whether it's time for a rebrand:1. Market Moving - has your brand stayed the same in a changing market?
Fifteen years ago, who would have thought that Apple would challenge the industry leader at the time, Microsoft? Over the past couple of years, Microsoft has found itself in a very difficult place trying to regain its lost market share, and has recently rebranded in an attempt to revitalise the company. Microsoft's rebrand is most certainly linked to the launch of the new Windows 8 OS and will perhaps aid Microsoft in attracting a more dynamic youth market. It might be too soon to tell the efficacy of the rebrand, but it is still an important step forward. 2. Culture Clashing - does the internal culture of your brand no longer match what your brand stands for?
When a brand's internal culture does not align with the brand values and external face of the organisation, this is a clear sign that change is needed. When we look at the likes of Vodacom, in the process of aligning themselves to their UK-based parent brand Vodafone, the brand personality was reformed. This rebrand was a much-needed change to embody the corporate culture of the Vodacom organisation. 3. Over Offering - has your brand diversified?
Brands that start out with a single offering and only later begin to diversify their portfolio frequently forget to alter their positioning to encompass all the new products and services. If we were to look at the likes of Woolworths, the retail brand successfully extended into liquor, linen, loans and more. With so many new offerings, consumers might have become confused. However, with their new brand essence of "quality", and their contemporary monolithic brand architecture (i.e. Woolworths Food, Woolworths Beauty, Woolworths Home etc.), Woolworths has been able to extend into various markets without deviating from their brand essence. 4. Audience Adding - is your brand serving new target markets?
When brands open themselves up to new target markets, they need to ensure they start conversations with their new consumers. This can be challenging if your brand is not geared to connect with this new segment. It does not mean that you need to change your brand entirely, but rather reengineer what it is you stand for to make it more impactful to all audience groups. An example of a brand that has managed to do this particularly well is Old Spice, having been around since 1938, Old Spice appealed predominantly to "old men". With a booming male-care market they needed to open their brand up to a larger audience group to fully capitalise on market opportunities. Through their rebrand, Old Spice has enjoyed enormous success and is now the number one deodorant brand in the United States.
In short, you need to find a balance between keeping up with the times, and being consistent so as to not confuse what you stand for in the minds of consumers. As Michael Eisner, CEO of Disney once said "A brand is a living entity - and it is enriched or undermined cumulatively over time, the product of a thousand small gestures".
For more information contact Yellowwood Future Architects - www.ywood.co.za
or call 011 268 5210 or 021 425 0344.