In our latest edition of The MTM Agency’s Think Tank series, Associate Director Richard Broughton and Senior Designer Mike Clewer argue that a brand refresh or revitalisation should be less about your logo and colours and more about understanding perceptions and tackling the disconnect between your brand and its audience.
The initial step: Uncover the current reality
Before embarking on a rebranding journey, it's essential to understand your current brand situation. A rebrand should never be a hasty decision; rather, it should be a well-informed choice based on thorough research and a comprehensive understanding of your internal and external operating environment. This assessment allows you to gauge your strengths, weaknesses, your competitive landscape and the shifts that are required both inside and outside your organisation.
Perception matters: The audience's viewpoint
An audience’s perception of a brand is almost always more significant than the brand’s internal beliefs. This external perspective is a critical determinant of your brand's value. Perception is reality. It's crucial to align this perception with your strategic objectives. After all, a brand's essence is shaped by what the audience sees, feels, and believes, making the alignment of perception and strategy paramount.
The 'Why': Your north star in brand strategy
It is impossible to underestimate how the 'why' should underpin everything in the rebranding process. It's not just about changing a logo or design; it's about fundamentally understanding why your brand needs a refresh. This central question is your North Star guiding every decision, every communication, and every interaction. If you lack a clear 'why,' you risk making changes for the sake of change rather than to achieve meaningful goals.
Moving beyond surface updates
A common misconception about rebranding is that it's merely about a new logo or a fresh look. While visual elements play a crucial role, they're only one part of the equation. Successful rebranding involves more than a logo swap; it's about articulating how the brand has evolved, what it stands for, and how it will serve its audience better. Without this narrative, changes seem superficial and are likely to fail to resonate with your audience.
Bringing internal teams on board
Your internal teams are the frontline ambassadors of your brand, highlighting the critical need to engage and align your teams with the rebranding process. When employees understand the 'why' behind the changes, they become brand advocates who authentically communicate the brand's essence. Transparent communication ensures that everyone is on the same page, aligned with your goals and more motivated to contribute to its success.
Trust and transparency: Pillars of successful rebranding
Effectively conveying trust and transparency are key ingredients of successful brands, especially in the digital age. Countless studies and reports highlight that success is more achievable if these values are woven throughout the brand and a central consideration of the brand refresh process. Your audience expects honesty, and building trust means consistently delivering on your brand promise. Rebranding is an opportunity to showcase your values, authenticity, and commitment to customer needs.
Actionable Insights for Your Rebranding Journey
Comprehensive research: Begin with a thorough review of your brand's current status, both internally and externally. Understand your strengths, weaknesses, and how your brand is perceived by your audience.
Audience perception: Focus on the external viewpoint of your brand. What do people say about your brand, and does it align with your strategic goals?
Define the 'Why': Establish a clear and compelling reason for your rebranding efforts. This 'why' will guide every decision you make and ensure that every change serves a meaningful purpose.
Communication is key: Beyond visual changes, articulate the transformation you're undergoing. Explain how the brand's essence has evolved and how it aligns with your audience's needs.
Engage internal teams: Involve your employees in the rebranding journey. Provide them with the 'why' behind the changes to foster alignment and authenticity in their interactions.
Prioritise trust and transparency: Build trust with your audience by being transparent about the 'why' behind your brand, the brand refresh process and your motivations. Demonstrate your commitment to authenticity and living your values.
The 'why' is the cornerstone of successful branding projects. It's not just about changing a logo or design; it's about understanding the essence of your brand and why change is required. By taking the insights you uncover to heart, you'll be equipped to embark on a branding journey that resonates with your audience, fosters trust, and aligns your internal teams. Remember, it's not just about change; it's about change with purpose.
By taking the insights you uncover to heart, you'll be equipped to embark on a branding journey that resonates with your audience, fosters trust, and aligns your internal teams. Remember, it's not just about change; it's about change with purpose.
Ready to change with purpose? Start a conversation with us today.