After about five years or so, most brands get itchy to rebrand. It’s a knee jerk reaction that is just that, an unwarranted, automatic way of (not) thinking. Imagine if we thought that way about other things in life. e.g. I’ve had the same ‘ol wife for 5 years, I think it’s time for an update. But, change can be good for some people as well as brands if it’s for the right reasons.
Most rebranding happens because the brand feels that their logo specifically is out of date. So, the logo, fonts and colors change. This is not the definition of rebranding, nor is logo design the definition of a brand. Look at Coca-Cola. They have rebranded many times over the years but the red color and logotype have remained strong since the late fifties. Coca-Cola has kept the nostalgic features that their customers love, but they have expanded to embrace fashionistas, a wealthier demographic and even the health conscious through campaigns, packaging and messaging. As a result, they have undergone numerous timely and successful rebrands without damaging their customer base or their brand power.
So, yes you do need to modernize from time to time, but you have to do it the right way. There are also several other reasons to rebrand and a right way to do it.
One of the most obvious reasons to rebrand is if you’re having trouble reaching your audience. Maybe your demographic has changed and your current brand doesn’t reach them. Maybe your target audience has evolved to consume messaging and brands differently.
Another reason may be over the years your brand has slowly evolved into something different unbeknownst to you. If your original business vision was based on selling Widget X, but most buyers come to you to purchase accessories for a Widget X, your brand has been changed by the all powerful consumer. Should you choose to go with the consumer flow, own it and rebrand.
A final reason that you should rebrand is because of brand extension. Much like the consumer evolution I just mentioned, if you have expanded your offerings you’ll need to rebrand to make your customers aware. You can let your customers know that they can still rely on you to be the brand they love but the difference is that now they can expect new, great things. Amazon went from selling books to selling everything under the sun.
If you think you need a rebrand, I suggest you tread lightly and consider all of these points. Though your customers and offerings may change, there is always comfort in familiarity. If you get bored with your brand, check to see if your customers are also. Don’t just rebrand because you personally feel your brand is stale. If you provide a product or service that people love, cool your jets and keep giving it to them. If you can’t fight that itch, ask yourself these questions. If you identify a legitimate need and you see a win-win for you and your customers, rebrand away, my friend.