8 Signs It's Time To Rebrand
Being a business owner & navigating the world of branding is tough, believe me, I've been there. Would you believe, when re-branding my studio to ARKYEN, it took me almost 5 months just to nail down the naming & visual identity process!?
Similarly, for my other business, which is an e-commerce business, that took only 2 weeks to re-name, but 4 months from the design to launch phase.
So it's not something that should be done often, or just because. Re-branding a current business is a BIG move. This is why, when rebranding, it's so important to work with a brand strategist, to ensure that this rebrand, will hopefully be the last & final one.
In Brand Strategy Sessions we help uncover the true meaning as to why you're current brand isn't working, and the necessary changes needed to make a powerful brand.
So here's how we know when it's time to make that move:
1. BUSINESS HAS SLOWED DOWN
Starting off with not the biggest red flag of the bunch, but one that still should be addressed. If your business has slowed down, and outside forces caused that, maybe it's not your branding. But if you feel you have been doing everything necessary to keep your business in top shape, and it's still not getting anywhere, it's probably an effect of your branding. Having a weak brand strategy, or identity shows to your customers. Maybe it's messy, maybe it doesn't make sense, maybe it doesn't look or feel professional, or maybe your brand messaging is just a big mess. Nevertheless, if you have seen a large decrease in the interest in your brand, it could be time to work with a brand specialist.
2. YOUR NAME NO LONGER REPRESENTS WHAT YOU DO
This is a very common one. Sometimes we have an initial plan and name a business based on that plan. But as time goes on, naturally business evolves, and that's okay. Just like us humans, businesses are built to evolve over time. This is why naming a business is so important. Not only to sound good, but often you need to consider the longevity and possible evolution of your business when naming it. For example, if you're a candle business, and your name is let's say "Burn Bright Candles" - but 3 years pass, and all of a sudden you are expanding into fragrances, or maybe other home accessories. Burn Bright Candles no longer represents what you do. So we always recommend when naming your business the first time around, or re-naming a current business, take into account the possibility of evolution and growth in the business, its offerings and/or your services.
3. YOU NEED TO LEAVE AN OLD IMAGE BEHIND
This is one that maybe only applies to your visual identity. You have a DIY logo that did the trick at the start, but now all of a sudden, business is growing and in turn, you have outgrown this old image. Maybe it's that you want a more professional look, a more colourful/artsy look, a more luxurious look. This is a sign that it's time for a new or updated visual identity. It's important when doing this, that your brand strategy is taken into account. Working with a graphic designer, and giving them all the direction, could turn out to grow old again. But collaborating with a brand designer, with a strategy session, will ensure your new visual identity is designed with your strategy & target audience in mind. Ensuring that your new look stands the test of time, because it's rooted in strategy, and not what's trendy right now.
4. YOU'RE EMBARRASSED BY YOUR ONLINE PRESENCE
Oh, this is a tough one to admit but one we see so often. If you don't work to uphold a strong brand image it's easy to get embarrassed over time. Maybe it's that your website is just messy & mediocre, maybe it's a bad naming choice, maybe a weak logo, or maybe some messy copy. Regardless, if you're not feeling 100% proud of the brand you have, then it's time to get to work on a bigger & better brand presence. You should be excited to share your brand with the world to anyone that shows interest! Whether that's showing your beautiful business cards at an event, your stunning Instagram page to a friend, or a potential customer landing on a fully functioning website. It's important that all brand touchpoints are not only consistent but designed in line with your brand & a strong strategy. In turn, every potential customer is impressed, and you have no fear in showing any of the above off to your customers!
5. YOU CAN'T STAND OUT FROM COMPETITORS
A very common one, you're just not standing out. This is unfortunately easy to fall into, especially for a new brand. You look to the competitors and build your brand in line with it. But we champion change, diversity & uniqueness with all our clients. It's important in today's world of everybody trying to be a 'somebody', that when someone uncovers your beautiful brand, they think you stand out from the crowd. You want to do things your own way, lead the pack as a changemaker. Being different shows our target audience that thought, care & passion went into what we do. Showing that you stand out from the rest shows creative thinking, and progression, which entices your audience even more so than if you looked like a carbon copy of a competitor. You need to show them why you're the better choice than your competitor.
6. YOUR STRATEGY HAS CHANGED
This is one I connect to massively. Yep, even as a brand designer & strategist myself, I have been on the road of feeling lost & as everything had changed. For me, this was due to many years ago, lacking a long term strategy. I fast-tracked to building an agency I thought would work, one that others had done but with my own spin. What I didn't consider, was my long term strategy, or my 'why'. When you dig deep into a brand strategy and figure out that 'why' to your business, I promise the rest falls into place. It's totally normal that strategies change over time, remember, we evolve as we should. But this for me was my biggest red flag that it was time to rebrand. To build a bigger brand, that was connected to my why, my reasoning, my values, my soul. So if you feel like you've hit a roadblock, or that you want to change how you do things, a strong rebrand is a great step into introducing your audience to your new & improved business!
7. YOU'VE GROWN BEYOND YOUR ORIGINAL PLANS
We can look at this one in two ways. One: similarly to the above, your plans just feel misaligned to your original plans, you've changed how you do things etc. Two: You've outgrown the brand you've built. This can look like a lot of things, physically growing the business to a larger team, which may, in turn, need a name change. For example, you're a designer & the business is your name, 2 years down the road you now have a team under a studio or agency structure, time to update that brand name to a wider scale. Another example, you were a makeup artist, freelancing, but now expanded into an academy. 'Your Name MUA' may not fit the bill anymore, and growth is happening to turn into an academy, so new branding should reflect that. You see where I'm going here. Another point to the importance of your name from the get to, to allow for a change and growth and scale in your plans & business.
8. YOU'RE TARGETING A NEW AUDIENCE
The final one goes hand in hand with the above two. Often in growing past original plans, or changing your strategy, comes a new target audience. The core of your branding should champion your target customer as the hero of your story. It's important that you do things uniquely, and that you're good at it. But it's more important that your customers feel that you do it for them, that you can solve their problems. And strong branding can say all of this to the target audience. So whether you're not targeting the right people with your current branding, or you're expanding/changing to target a new kind of audience - it's usually a good indicator that a rebrand may be worth it.
If you've made it this far, you're probably a little overwhelmed, because the idea of rebranding has been playing in the back of your mind for some time. But if you're reading the above, with a 'yes' 'yes' & 'yes' to a lot of those points, it may be time for a rebrand. And trust me when I decided in the past it was time for me, it was a scary decision to make. So, don't do it alone. To ensure your brand lasts and targets the right people for some time, it's important to connect with the right person & design this beautiful brand with strategy.
Interested in us being that perfect team? Reach out to us here, and together let's inject some magic into your business, and transform it into a powerful brand!