How To Rebrand: 19 Questions To Ask Before You Start

How to Rebrand and the People Who Look Updward

Companies will at some point come to that milestone known as “the rebrand.” For some, it happens early on once they’ve discovered who they really are while with others, it occurs after many years of having grown (or outgrown) their brand.

Then and Now

You’ll discover that some brands go along an evolutionary track that one could basically follow. (Personally, I am not a fan of the current Pepsi logo and consider the legacy and heritage was tossed out the window with the current logo, whereas Coca-Cola has done an amazing job of maintaining and refreshing their brand.)

Pepsi's evolution of a brand

Others have made a change that was a disastrous departure that resulted in a complete about-face within a two-week window:

The Gap Rebrand -- Putting the UGH in UglyAnd while a brand is so much more than a company’s logo, the logo is one of the key ambassadors to any brand. Hence the examples shown above.

There are various reasons, assorted catalysts or numerous “straws that can break the camel’s back” of the old or existing brand.

Yet, there are a number of questions that routinely come up when I start with a company to rebrand them. Here (in no particular order) are many of the questions that need to be answered to keep the brand:

  • true to itself,
  • meaningful so people take notice and care, and
  • powerful enough to make the difference everyone hopes for.

19 Questions That Every Rebrand Needs to Ask

  1. Why are we doing a rebrand?
  2. What problem are we attempting to solve?
  3. Has there been a change in the competitive landscape that is impacting our growth potential?
  4. Has our customer profile changed?
  5. Are we pigeonholed as something that we (and our customers) have outgrown?
  6. Does our brand tell the wrong (or outdated) story?
  7. What do we want to convey? To whom?
  8. Why should anyone care about our brand?
  9. Have we isolated exactly who should care about our brand?
  10. Have their needs, or the way they define them, changed?
  11. Are we asking our customer to care more about our brand — and what it means — than we do?
  12. Is our brand associated with something that is no longer meaningful?
  13. Is our brand out of step with the current needs and desires of our customers?
  14. Are we leading with our brand direction?
  15. Are we following with our brand direction?
  16. Is the goal of this rebrand a stepping stone (evolutionary) or a milestone (revolutionary) ?
  17. Will this solution work in 5, 10 and 15 years from now based on what we can anticipate?
  18. Have we assigned some committee to manage the project versus someone (or at most, two people) who is/are focused, inspired and can lead?
  19. If we were starting our business today, would this be the brand solution we would come up with?

More Than Skin Deep

Use the questions above to isolate why you rebrand to keep it from the “cliffs of insanity” (i.e., cliche crud like much of the current wave of homogenized, committee-drenched crap being put out by several of the big Fortune 100 corporations over the last few months).

 

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