Rebranding is the process by which a service or product that was developed in one brand, or company is marketed in a different brand name or identity. This involves essential changes in the brands name, logo, image, advertising, and marketing strategies. Generally after a Merger or Acquisition, companies rebrand their newly acquired products, to keep them along with their existing product line. The process of rebranding aims to reposition the brand or the company, or to distinguish itself from the negative opinions about the previous brands or to climb the success ladder by moving the brand still upwards.
Brand, Branding, and Re-branding:
Brand: Brand is a symbolic embodiment of all information related to the product, service, or company. It is an intangible and emotional bond created by every interaction, even insignificant ones. It is a feeling that is being evoked when the organization or the products name is heard. A brand has a unique name, identity, character, and personality; just like a human being. A good brand possesses the following characters:
- Deliver messages in an appropriate way.
- Confirm credibility.
- Get connected with the prospects, and sustain relationship with the existing members.
- Attract potential business opportunities.
Branding: Branding is the art of creating and maintaining a brand; successfully. The brand experience of the target audience can be directed in a positive momentum through appropriate branding activities. It enfolds the company’s commitment to the ultimate consumers that the product carries quality and posses some features that makes it unique from that of its competitors’.
Rebranding: This can be defined as “a process of giving a product or an organization a new image, in order to make it more attractive and successful” (Collins English Dictionary). This is done to increase consumer loyalty, improve member professionalism, enter a new market trend, create a stronger voice in the industry, and increase shareholder value or to reenergise a company.
Is Rebranding Necessary?
Contradictory opinions exist regarding the process of rebranding. One is that rebranding is essential for business success; to evolve the brands so as to make sure that it keeps abreast of the competition, and meet the consumers ever changing preferences. The other side of the coin depicts an opinion that rebranding should be avoided at all costs. If brands like Kodak and Coca Cola can be market leaders why should rebranding ever be considered? Generally many companies consider rebranding as a ‘Cosmetic Work out’. When companies fail to establish one brand, or companies whose brand had been through any kind of scandal, may go for a rebranding process. Here, the intention is to erase the previous brand image and establish a fresh one. Some others have positive reasons; like mergers, or a company that is expanding its product line.
Rebranding can be successfully applied to new products, those that are still in the process of development or even to mature products. As this is a very complex process, utmost care must be taken. The new brand should be launched with much empathy and care. This involves a methodical process of proper strategy, personal interactions and memorable visuals.
Dos and Don’ts:
- A successful rebranding process must take care of the following:
Intensive Strategy: The Company must be ready to spend a significant amount of money in advertising, communications, and promotion. This will enable the brand to get re-staged.
- Gradual Restage: This can be done with a limited overall marketing investment. This requires a low budget, but a considerable amount of time, and should be done on a continuous basis.
On the other hand, the company must be cautious not to commit the following errors while executing rebranding:
- Non-looking through the customer’s perspective: The needs and mindset of the consumers should be properly evaluated before any changes are implemented. Rebranding strategy of the company should be understood and accepted by the consumers.
- Lack of credibility and facelift: The reason for rebranding should be believable and acceptable by the consumers. It must have a credibility; internally. If the employees of the company do not believe, the ultimate consumers would not have faith in the product either.
- Inadequate branding process: A brand only becomes successful when supported with adequate branding. To streamline business operations, and expand demographic focuses, branding is necessary.
- Intimidated by consultants: Notwithstanding consultants being hired for rebranding, it is the owner who knows more about the brand than anyone else. The internal point person should be checked for his skills, time and resources.
- Rebranding without research: Every brand needs refreshing to stay alive in the market. They need to be positioned and enhanced. But adopting a change without doing proper research may prove to be disastrous.
Innovating positioning of brands creates a huge market opportunity for the players and enables them to capture the market. With proper brand image, supported by the USPs clearly defined, Companies and Businesses small or large can stand apart in the competitive clutter.
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