Companies may have a variety of reason to re-brand, either by updating a logo or by changing their name and look entirely. In some cases, re-branding may simply be used to reflect a company’s growth over time. For instance, Sound of Music, established in 1966, was a perfect name for a company that sold stereo systems. However, once the company started venturing out to other merchandise, such as home appliances and VCR’s, the name no longer represented their company. In 1983 they re-branded entirely and now we all know this same company as Best Buy.
Deciding to re brand your company will require some careful consideration. There is a lot involved in gathering a specific strategy for your re-brand, such as messaging, colour palette, logo, product labels, announcements for your current clientele and more.
However, if done right, and for the right reasons, it can certainly pay off.
Here are some of the best companies who have successfully re-branded themselves:
It’s well suited to start with Dropbox at the top of our list, as their re-brand launch in 2017 was a hot topic among the designer community. The Dropbox re-brand included a whole new look with completely different colours and typestyles. When the new design was initially introduced, Dropbox saw a decline in their key metrics. Items such as colour and placement seemed to affect trust and clarity among its users negatively. They once again redesigned and rebuilt their pricing page and saw a double-digit metrics increase. The third, and latest, design out-performed both the original and first re-brand launch.
Auto-trader has long been a trusted source for buying and selling vehicles. The reason behind Auto Trader re-branding themselves was because they wanted to stay more relevant to the newer generation. They did not want to be known only as a print magazine for men of a specific age-range, which is how they initially launched. Their new logo and re-brand looks more modern. They’ve achieved this new look through contemporary visuals and a fresh approach to their digital presence.
They originally started with a light blue and white logo, and in 2014 they switched up their colours, logo and messaging to reflect their culture and community better. Researchers visited 13 cities and stayed with 18 different hosts and recorded their entire process and experience. Soon after, the new logo, which pushes the concept of people and community, was born. Their messaging is people + places + love + Airbnb = A (their logo). Airbnb also expanded its app to allow people to experience where they are visiting as a local, providing the opportunity to book a guide to explore new areas.
We have also seen many large companies launch a refreshed look of their brand, ranging from Instagram to Google to Tropicana. Many brands who unveil their new look will see some backlash from consumers and design communities, however, what’s important to focus on are the metrics. As in the case with Dropbox, they listened to their clients about their branding based on the critical parameters involved.
When a company launches their re-brand, it’s essential to analyze the response and feedback. Here are a few tips to use when doing so:
You need to assess any criticism and decide if it is negatively impacting your product or consumers. In Airbnb’s case, they received a lot of negative feedback which they decide to ride out and were able to see a positive return. You need to logically assess the situation and try to keep your emotions, or attachment, separate. Keep in mind that you can’t make everybody happy with designs and logos. However, your core consumers are the most important to assess the situation. For instance, even if your re-brand was well received, if your key metrics are decreasing, then you may want to evaluate what is negatively affecting the journey, which leads to the next point.
2. Move Forward With It
After assessing the situation of your re-brand, launch your content strategy and change the conversation. If your re-brand is part of a series of messages, continue with launching your narrative and directing the attention to your new direction. Instagram decided to use a flat logo in 2013 but did not initiate the new logo until 2016. They received a lot of mixed feedback as well. However, part of their re-branding was also to remove any colour from their app, replacing the blue bar at the top, and buttons at the bottom, with white space. They did this because they wanted users to have the image they are viewing to be the most outstanding content while using the app. Although they did recognize that newer designs were using flat icons, they didn’t just jump on the bandwagon and join in, and they had specific reasoning behind their re-brand.
3. Be Transparent
Keeping your audience or consumers up to date with why you re-branding is one of the best ways to get your vision out to core clients. Of course, this would mean that you will have to re-brand for the right reasons, and not because you are merely following a trend or have grown tired of an old look. You should never compare your brand to others, instead, keep logic and strategy on your side — the more research and access to critical metrics you have, the better.
Of course, not all re-branding is for digital platforms only. Companies providing a physical product or service, such as McDonald’s or Tropicana, require a specific strategy for new-look packaging and/or labelling, as well as marketing and advertising materials when updating their brand. For products that are in grocery stores, more research may be needed to understand the trigger of buyer psychology to make your product stand out for the right reasons.
We had recently written a blog with regards to how your label can help your product stand out, and you can click here to read that blog.