How Do You Know When It’s Time for a Rebrand?
Sarah felt like her business was in a funk. She still had customers and sales coming in. Her profits were steady. But she wasn’t growing her email list or excited about creating new products. Everything felt ho-hum.
When Sarah reached out to a business coach, the other woman suggested it might be time for a rebrand of her business. A rebrand is when you take a hard look at the image behind your business and you adjust it. Here are a few key signs it might be time for a rebrand…
Your Audience Has Changed
Sarah originally started her business designing websites for corporations. She enjoyed the challenge but found her true passion was helping mom-preneurs DIY their own websites. This meant Sarah’s target market had changed but she hadn’t adjusted her branding.
As a result, she felt like her business no longer represented what she did. It was hard to feel excited to serve anyone when there was a huge disconnect between what she loved and who she wanted to serve.
You’ve Gained Valuable Experience
Sometimes, it’s important to rebrand when your core offerings have changed. When Nancy started her website, she was a virtual assistant to entrepreneurs. She loved serving this audience and was still passionate about helping them a decade later.
But she’s no longer the fresh-faced newbie she once was. Now Nancy is an online business manager and it’s time to rebrand her business so clients can appreciate her valuable experience (and pay her accordingly).
Your Core Offering Is Changing
It might be time to rebrand if your core offer isn’t what you thought it would be. Tanya was a service provider specializing in copywriting. But the more she worked with her clients, the more she realized they were coming to her for help with their sales funnels, not for her copywriting experience.
When Tanya realized this, she decided to rebrand with a focus on her expertise in sales funnels. It doesn’t mean she won’t offer copywriting occasionally, but she’ll focus on providing what her clients really want from her—her sales funnel consulting.
You’ve Changed Significantly
Laura ran a business focused on making marriages stronger. When she went through a bitter divorce, she no longer had the energy or desire to be in the relationship industry. She knew it was time for a rebrand.
Some businesses are what’s known as “lifestyle businesses”. That means, these businesses are closely tied to your lifestyle. If your lifestyle changes significantly, it will affect your business as well. For example, if you’re a stay-at-home mom and you serve that audience then when you are left with an empty nest, you may find yourself craving a rebrand.
A rebrand can be wonderful and exciting! It’s a great opportunity to evaluate your brand and decide what you want to be known for.
But before we jump into more about a rebrand, there’s also what is known as a refresh. So let’s take a look at what that is and how it’s different from a rebrand.
What’s the Difference Between a Refresh and a Rebrand?
If you’re curious about the difference between a rebrand and a refresh, read on…
Starting Fresh or Being Choosy
With a rebrand, many business owners start from scratch. They toss out their old logo, fonts, colors, themes, messages, and core offerings. With all of these changes, the final branding may not even resemble the business you originally built.
By contrast, a refresh means being choosy. You might pick which elements of your brand you want to keep. When Tina decided to refresh her brand, she already knew her theme and message were correct. But she’d gotten feedback that the colors she was using in her logo and on her website weren’t attracting her ideal audience. She tweaked them and quickly found that her brand began resonating with her people.
New Offers or The Same Ones Spiffed Up
A rebrand makes sense when you’re creating offers that are radically different from what you’ve done in the past. For example, if you previously offered web design services and you’ve decided to focus solely on copywriting, then a rebrand is a smart idea.
With a refresh, your offers might stay the same. After all, you still want to design websites. But you might tweak or change those offers to reflect new price points, added value, or your increased level of experience.
Moving On or Serving the Same Market
Sometimes, a rebrand happens when a business owner wants to serve a new market. After all, if you’re helping new moms start an online business but you pivot and start serving six-figure executives, you’ll want to use different branding to attract your new audience.
With a refresh, your target audience usually stays the same. You’re still deeply passionate about serving them and committed to helping your people. Like Tina, you may have just discovered some element of your branding isn’t quite speaking to your audience the way you’d hoped.
Choosing between a refresh or a rebrand can feel a little overwhelming. If you need advice on how to do this, reach out to a business coach. They can guide you through the process!
Which Mistakes Should You Avoid When Rebranding?
Kathy had loved offering her services as virtual assistant. But during a call with her mastermind group, she realized it was time to pursue her dream of becoming an author and a speaker. This meant it was time to start the rebranding process on her website and in her business.
Rebranding doesn’t have to be complicated or difficult. However, there are a few key missteps you’ll want to avoid to make the process smoother. Here’s what you shouldn’t do…
Cast Off Your Old Audience
Yes, you’re going in a different direction. But that doesn’t mean giving the cold shoulder to former clients or suddenly ignoring colleagues that were excellent sources of referrals.
You don’t want to damage your reputation or hurt those you’ve worked with in the past. So be kind and patient during this phase. Simply explain that you’re going in a new direction.
Keep in mind that your network may still be able to help you reach your goals. A former client might put you in touch with an event coordinator who needs a speaker. An old colleague may know a publisher who’s looking for a writer that specializes in your niche.
Not Telling Anyone
Don’t suddenly change your brand overnight without telling anyone. This will lead to a lot of confusion and might cause your customers some stress. Remember, your customers and clients have supported you on your journey.
Invite your community into your journey as you make your new shift. Explain that you’re excited about this new direction and give others a way to support you. For example, you might say, “I’m delighted by my new brand name. Would you do me a favor and give my new Facebook page a like?”
Changing Too Much Too Fast
Kathy watched another business owner change her brand name, website, offers, and customer base within a short time frame. She changed so much and so quickly that her old customers felt lost.
While you definitely want to let your customers know the change is coming, don’t feel like you have to alter everything at once either. It’s OK to redirect your website to a new URL but keep the same theme. This gives your audience a chance to adjust to your new direction.
What Elements Will You Change During a Rebrand?
When Mia decided it was time for a rebrand, she felt overwhelmed by all of the decisions she had to make. She wondered which elements she should keep from her old brand and which ones she should update. If you’re like Mia and you have some of the same concerns, here’s what you should think about…
Your logo is the central piece of your brand identity, which means changing it up can be tricky. Sometimes, a brand’s logo becomes so iconic that a company opts to merely “freshen” it every few years.
But if you’re going in an entirely new direction or pursuing a new audience, it’s probably time for a new logo. You want a logo that’s going to attract and speak to your potential clients and customers.
If you’ve changed the name of your business, you’ll want an URL that matches your new brand name. You can search for a new domain name or purchase one through a hosting company like us right here at Mom Webs 🙂
When you grab a new URL, you can set it up so your old website redirects to the new URL. That means any customers or clients who accidentally type in your old address will still arrive at your website.
Once you’ve updated your logo and URL, it’s time to consider changing up your website’s theme. If the theme is still new and serves your current content well, then you may not need to change it.
But if your theme is older or it lacks the features that you need, now is a good time to consider remodeling. If you use WordPress, you might want to consider a framework option like the Genesis Framework or Thrive Themes. Both companies create WordPress themes that are easy to customize and filled with plenty of features.
Your Social Media Banners
As soon as you begin rolling out your new brand, you’ll want to update your social media banners, too. These are easy-to-forget images like your Twitter header, your Facebook page cover, or your LinkedIn graphic.
You can outsource this task to the same person who designed your logo. But if you’re a DIY’er, you can also use a website like Canva or PicMonkey to create a beautiful graphic on your own. Just make sure to size the dimensions correctly for each social network and you shouldn’t have a problem.
Don’t feel like you have to rush your rebrand process. It’s a smart thing to take some time and think it through. Consider which elements you want to change and what you’d like to keep the same.
How Can You Handle a Rebrand Gracefully?
Stephanie had decided to rebrand her business. She knew exactly what she was going to change up and what she’d keep the same. Since she’d once been with a company who handled a rebranding poorly, she made the decision to do a few key things with her own rebrand…
Let Customers Know in Advance
The first thing Stephanie did was starting hinting at the changes to come on social media. She posted sneak peeks of her new logo and chatted about why she was excited for the coming change.
When you tell customers you’re planning to rebrand, introduce the idea slowly. Most people don’t like change and shy away from it. So it’s up to you to position this rebrand as a positive event that customers can look forward to.
Set a Timeline
Although she chose not to publicly reveal her timeline, Stephanie did create one. She noted down the important milestones she wanted to cover like switching her website ULR and choosing a new theme.
There are many decisions that go into creating a successful rebrand. It can be helpful if you have a timeline in place so you can make sure those changes are rolled out smoothly.
Plan for Delays
Don’t assume that everything will happen easily and quickly. It’s not uncommon to start on rebranding and realize you have to fix one or more things.
For Stephanie as she was moving her website, she realized her old one had been infected with a virus and there were still traces of it in her files.
Because she’d accounted for potential delays in her timeline, she didn’t feel stressed or troubled over this development. Instead, she hired an expert to clean her files and went on to the next phase of her plan.
Prepare for Customer Support
As you rebrand, you will probably get a higher volume of customer support issues. One client may not know where to login anymore. Another might not be getting your emails.
If you have a large customer base or if you’re already overwhelmed with client work, you may want to consider hiring a virtual assistant temporarily. Your VA can handle these common issues and resolve them for your customers in a timely manner.
Remember, you don’t have to get your rebranding done in a day. It’s OK if it takes you a few weeks to get everything sorted. It’s a lot like moving—some days, you’ll feel like there are boxes everywhere and you’re making no progress.
But rest assured that you are. When you’re done with this big rebranding process, you’ll be happier and better able to serve your customers.
Rebranding is delightful and thrilling! Approach it with a “can do” attitude and a positive mindset. Not only will the journey be easier but you’ll enjoy it more.
And remember, if you need help figuring out whether a refresh or rebrand is what you need, a business coach can be a great sounding block to figure out the direction you need to go. If you need a coach, be sure to check out the different options I have available here.