In my previous blog (part 1 of 2), we checked off the first few steps to rebranding on a shoestring budget. Once you and the team have completed a brainstorming session, follow with these remaining steps to make your rebrand a success.
- Leadership buy-in
Yes, this was already provided as step 1. But after the brainstorming session it’s crucial to once again raise your hand and confirm that leadership is still on board. Remember the consensus everyone came to around vision, messaging and competitive positioning? Make sure it stands firm so your rebrand stays the course.
- Pick a name
Easier said than done? Not if you asked the right questions in your research and analyzed in your brainstorming session. For instance, here are some questions we asked ourselves and our client:
- How strong is name recognition among current clients? (uncovered during research step)
- Does the current name appeal to an evolving customer base/target market?
- Is the current name dated?
- What do we want the new name to imply/depict?
- Do we want the new name to invoke an action or emotion?
In our case, the brainstorming session determined that our physician-led client wanted options from three categories: Latin roots, MD references, something that implied synchronization. Your brainstorming session should uncover specific definitions or meanings BEFORE you set out looking for a name.
Our team came up with 16 names across the three categories our client provided. We narrowed this first set down before sharing options with the client. It’s important to note that almost as soon as you think of a name, you need to check for URL, copyrights and trademarks. An entire blog post could be devoted to this so I won’t go into detail. Be sure you conduct due diligence BEFORE proposing new names to your leadership team. What’s worse than not coming up with with a creative new name? Coming up with a fabulous one that is proposed, selected and is illegal to replicate.
- New messaging, logo and style guide
You have a new name! Congratulations! Now comes the work of bringing it to life. Messaging and positioning defines your company name, tagline, vision and mission. A good tip is to start with the problem in your industry. If you have multiple buyer personas (ie) CFO, CIO, etc, repeat this exercise for each buyer’s pain points or problem. Once you have the problem, you craft several sentences about how your product or service solves the problem(s). Refining and crafting the problem and solution should bring you to a solid message for your new brand. Not sure how to execute positioning and messaging? Contact us.
Next up, the graphic design work to give your new name a look and feel. Whether you are a team of one and you design the logo on your own or you outsource the logo to a designer, be sure to include a style guide. What complementary colors and fonts does your logo look good next to? What should the logo not look like? A formal style guide answers these questions. It’s basically a user’s manual for anyone that touches your logo in the future.
- Share the good news
You’ve worked hard to get to this point. Now it’s time to spread the good word! Depending on the size of your team and budget, there are countless ways to announce a rebrand. Your new company name does not constitute a press release, however, unless you make it count. Do you have an event coming up? Did you help a new client solve a business problem? Include news that is of value when promoting your new brand. Otherwise it’s just fluff. Here is a short list of some ways to share your news:
- Press release (but make it count!)
- Media relations
- Client appreciation party
- Event signage/collaterals
- Social media/blog posts
- Tie your laces and go!
For the readers who are forced to rebrand in almost unreasonable timeframes, download this sample timeline—tie your laces and go!
I hope you’ve found these eight steps useful if you’re about to embark on a rebrand. Comments and questions are always welcome!